Understanding Authenticity in China’s Cultural Heritage

Understanding Authenticity in China’s Cultural Heritage

Notions of “authenticity” are both culturally constructed and historically contingent. What one deems to be genuine or fake follows norms agreed upon by their particular communities. In this project, we explore the construction of “authenticity,” and its consequences, in relation to China’s cultural heritage - those objects, texts, and intangible practices concerned with China’s past. While there is plenty of research on the scientific identification of forgeries, it is only in recent years that scholars have come to see authenticity as a broad, multi-faceted concept worth discussing on a conceptual level. The present project is interested not only in these conceptual issues, but also in the practical ramifications they have for work done in cultural heritage management, museums, antiquities trade, collecting, and academic research.



chinas cultural heritage


A fake Jue


HP China Doll 


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Chinese characters for real and fake 





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