Magazine article Washington Report on Middle East Affairs

Bethlehem Museum Preserves Heritage, Identity, and Culture

Magazine article Washington Report on Middle East Affairs

Bethlehem Museum Preserves Heritage, Identity, and Culture

Article excerpt

A special presentation on the Bethlehem Museum focused on the critical role the museum plays in strengthening Palestinian identity, heritage, and culture in a modern context. Abigail Galván, HCEF executive assistant to the president and CEO and special programs coordinator, described the museum as "one of the graces that gives us hope for a brighter future."

Dr. Cynthia Finlayson, associate professor of anthropology/archeology and museum studies at Brigham Young University, gave an inspiring talk about how a museum can save cultural heritage. Dr. Finlayson, who has served as a consultant on the Bethlehem Museum project, explained: "Identity is memory. Memory is identity. Without a shared identity, culture disappears. A museum enhances, stores, validates, preserves and saves identity. …

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