LEXINGTON, Ky. (Feb. 15, 2017) –When designers, planners, preservationists and others
shape the landscape, they determine which pieces of the past will be allowed to tell their
stories, and which will not. Sites strongly associated with violence, discrimination or tragedy
represent a unique subset of historic sites; they tell stories that everyone in the present may
not always want to hear.
Recognizing the need for honest interpretation and intentional dialogue about these sites,
the Department of Historic Preservation in the College of Design at the University of
Kentucky will address the subject in this year’s annual Historic Preservation Symposium –
“Conflict, Violence and Preservation: Interpreting difficult history”– to be held March 31 at
the Singletary Center for the Arts.
“The event will explore the modern place of artifacts of the past that reflect a legacy of
racial, religious, cultural or class-oriented conflict, and will ask whether we can learn the
lessons these places offer if they are not present in the landscape,” said Doug Appler,
assistant professor of Historic Preservation in the College of Design.
This year’s speakers include: Bernadette Johnson, superintendent of the Manzanar National
Historic Site, one of the 10 U.S. centers where Japanese American citizens were forced into
internment camps during World War II; Anne Thomas, coordinator of the Stolpersteine
project that honors Holocaust victims throughout Europe; Sean Kelley, the director of
interpretation at Eastern State Penitentiary in Philadelphia, which has become a platform for
questioning policies of mass incarceration; and Sia Sanneh, senior attorney at the Equal
Justice Initiative, discussing EJI's plans to build the Memorial to Peace and Justice in
Birmingham, Ala., to honor the victims of lynching in the United States.
The annual Historic Preservation Symposium welcomes you to engage with these speakers
and discuss preservation’s role in continuing the conversation. The event is free and open
to the public.
For more information, contact Doug Appler at firstname.lastname@example.org.