Thoughts about conservation and enhancement of archaeological heritage in France

Abstract

French archaeological heritage of the classic age has been subjected, over the centuries, to phenomena that have caused either its abandonment or the continuation of its use, its transformation or the loss of its integrity. In particular, the sites for entertainment such as theatres, amphitheatres, circuses, stadiums and hippodromes are now often in ruins (as a result of either destructive events or the interruption of their use) after knowing seasons of transformation, conversion to new uses, repairing of damage of various kinds, restoration, adaptation to new stylistic canons: processes that have ensured the survival of these buildings through a continuous integration in urban activities. Today, these goods, mostly located in relevant urban contexts, are part of a landscape whose transformations guided by illusions aimed to make them attractive for tourists, are creating sharp separations between these monuments and the contest in which they are. Based on these premises, the paper presents the results of a research aimed the preservation of this heritage, suggesting strategies for its valorization that, in accordance with the requirements of the contemporary world, propose a project for tourist fruition which must be compatible with such goods that are architectural and parts of a landscape. In particular, the paper analyzes some interventions of enhancement on the archaeological heritage in comparison with those cases in which development strategies have proved compatible effects with the demands of conservation

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