Herito – a bilingual English-Polish quarterly – is a new initiative by the International Cultural Centre. It is our hope that it will come to be a unique forum for discussions on heritage, culture, our times, and the future.
As a periodical it will focus on issues of locus and related reflections, on space and its various meanings, and on the geography of the imagination and of memory. The pretext for the topics it undertakes to examine is Central Europe, which has a heritage of experience and cultural dilemmas that are at once unique and highly relevant to contemporary debate. In this first issue, entitled “Symbols and clichés”, we give a critical airing to notions connected with national ideologies and political myths and their functions, and look also at their various reflections in art, architecture and the landscape. The material and non-material heritage of national ideology built up over the past two centuries continues to influence the collective imagination of our societies today. What is the nature of this symbolism in our times? Is it a burden of our age, a colourful tourist product or a shared heritage? In these days, does my hero have to be your enemy?
The theme we have chosen for this issue is by no means exhausted in its content. We hope you find that these discussions, opinions, reflections on new and recent exhibitions and books, and examples of successful cultural projects and modern institutions operating in the broadly defined field of heritage combine to produce an interesting panorama of culture from our region of Europe.