Hüseyin Burak Soy

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Hüseyin Burak Soy


Hüseyin Burak Soy has graduated from the Archaeology Department at Mimar Sinan University of Fine Arts (MSUFA), İstanbul in 2004. During his studies there, he has worked with various Turkish and foreign archaeological projects as a student. After his graduation, he participated in the Byzantine Harbour Excavations under the auspices of the Istanbul Archaeological Museum, and then worked for Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality. He has completed his master’s studies in Architectural History at İstanbul Technical University in 2015, and in 2016 he has graduated from MSUFA in a master’s degree program in Classical Archaeology. In 2017, he started his studies in Settlement Archaeology Ph.D programme at Middle East Technical University, Ankara. The topic of his thesis is “The Appreciation of Classical Heritage in West Turkey: Understanding Greek Immigrant and Turkish Attitudes – A Holistic Approach”.

Peace and Conflict on Heritage: A Comparison of Greece and Turkey World Heritage Lists for the Study of the Concept of Heritage as a Tool for Peace

The antiquated turbulent character of the relationship between Greece and Turkey only newly articulated once again by the signature of an agreement between Libya and Turkey unveiled in December 2019, resultant of Greece’s objection to United Nations regarding her sea boundries. The United Nations remained neutral and urged Turkey and Greece to maintain a dialogue. In a world of nation-states, the material remains of the past often receive an important role in the editing of both idealised national discourses, and counter-discourses. In terms of understanding the value of “Heritage” both as a concept and tool for peace, this paper concentrates on the heritage in Greece and Turkey, which are distinguished as the “same” and the “other” respectively, in the Western ideology. Through a study of the emergence and development of the heritage concept in both countries via the World Heritage Lists, I aim to define the trends of the use of heritage as a tool against the “other”. In so doing, I ask the questions: How have the attitudes towards heritage in Turkey and Greece change through time and are these changes reflected in the World Heritage Lists of both countries? How have the Turkish and Greek World Heritage Lists developed through time? How have the Turkish attitudes towards the Greek past in Turkey changed through time? How have the Greek attitudes towards the Turkish past in Greece changed through time? Are there trends in Turkey and Greece regarding the selection or neglection of certain monuments of certain periods? If so, are these trends reflected in the World Heritage Lists of both countries? Answers to these questions regarding the heritage as a tool will help us to develop our understanding of heritage as a concept and presumably lead us to other questions: How has UNESCO changed in its ideology, methodology, and goals in terms of an evaluation of these two countries World Heritage Lists? What potential have the heritage listed in both countries as a tool to create a platform for a more harmonious existance and and communication in both micro and macro scales? Or will there a need to do some (other) lists once the the concept of heritage has transformed into another tool, a tool for dialogue, understanding, and peace?