Introduction to Heritage Studies


Overview of the historical development of the concept of heritage, relating it to the main debates about artistic heritage in the contemporary world.
Acquaintance with the main international and national institutions, encouraging critical analysis of the charters and conventions on cultural heritage.
Contact with the main Portuguese cultural laws, in order to recognize the stages of heritage safeguard and main categories of intervention.
Understanding the current parameters of cultural heritage recognition in its multiple thematic approaches, in order to perceive both the specificity and transversality of the artistic heritage.

General characterization





Responsible teacher

Maria Margarida Simão Tavares da Conceição


Weekly - Available soon

Total - 168

Teaching language



Available soon


Assmann, Aleida. 2008. "Canon and Archive". Cultural Memories Studies. An International and Interdisciplinary Handbook, ed. Astrid Erll and Ansgar Nünning, 97-197. Berlin: De Gruyter.
Choay, Françoise. (1992) 2000. Alegoria do Património. Lisboa: Edições 70.
Custódio, Jorge, coord. 2010. 100 anos de património. Memória e identidade. Portugal 1910-2010. Cat. Lisboa: IGESPAR.
Harrison, Rodney. 2012. Heritage: critical approaches. London: Routledge.
Lowenthal, David. (1985) 2003. The past is a foreign country. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Neto, Maria João Baptista. 2001. Memória, Propaganda e Poder: o restauro dos monumentos nacionais (1929-1991). Porto: Publicações FAUP.
Riegl, Alois. (1903) 2016. O culto moderno dos monumentos. Lisboa: Edições 70.
Rossa, Walter e Margarida Calafate Ribeiro, org. 2015. Patrimónios de influência portuguesa: modos de olhar. Coimbra: Imprensa da Universidade.

Teaching method

Topics will be taught on lecture format, complemented by practical sessions based on bibliography and legal documents discussion, and by a field trip.

Evaluation method

Evaluation Methodologies - final test(50%), midterm test(20%), practical exercise/essay(30%)

Subject matter

1. Problems in conceptualizing cultural heritage
2. Evolution of the concept of heritage
The monuments before Renaissance
From Humanism to Enlightenment: the concept of Antique
Romanticism and Historicism: John Ruskin and Viollet-le-Duc
Camillo Boito and Alois Riegl contributions
3. Institutional framework and heritage law
UNESCO and international conventions
Portuguese institutions: previous lines and the DGEMN
Main Portuguese heritage legislation and the DGPC
Heritage management tools
4. Multiplicity and specificity of artistic heritage


Programs where the course is taught: