The Destruction of Memory: film screening and forum

Co-presented with the Museums and Heritage Studies Program at the University of Sydney

Destruction Memory CMS

In August 2015 the destruction of the one of Syria’s most famous sites, the Temple of Baal-Shamin in the ancient city of Palmyra, was stage managed, documented and images spread to the global media by Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (Isil). It drew international condemnation and raised the issue of destruction of cultural heritage during war again.

During the Bosnian War of 1992 to 1995, in Bosnia and Kosovo both mosques and catholic churches had been deliberately targeted and destroyed. In 2012 the designated UNESCO world heritage site, Timbuktu in Mali, became the battle ground for religious extremists, and its famous mausoleums as well as the Sidi Yahia mosque were destroyed.

Despite international legislation and policy leading to some prosecutions in the International Criminal Court, the damage done to the cultural identity and heritage has remained hidden. Is there are war on culture, and what can be done to save it?

The film The Destruction of Memory documents these events and talks to the people trying to save their cultural heritage, both on the ground and in international courts.

Join us for a screening of the film, followed by a conversation moderated by Dr Avril Alba, Acting Director of the Master of Museums and Heritage Program, the film's director Tim Slade, historian Professor Dirk Moses from the University of Sydney’s Department of History who appears in the film, and Sheridan Burke, Partner of GML Heritage, based in Sydney.