The Nature of Heritage: The New South Africa is unique in revealing the conflicts inherent in preserving both natural and cultural heritage, by examining the archaeological, ethnographic and economic evidence of a nation's attempts to master its past and its future.
- Provides a classic example of how nations attempt to overcome a negative heritage through past mastering of their histories
- Evaluates the continuing dominance of nature and conservation over concerns for cultural heritage
- Employs ethnographic and archaeological methodologies to reveal how the past is processed into a new national heritage
- Identifies heritage as therapy, exemplified in the strategy for repairing legacies of racial and ethnic difference in post-apartheid South Africa
- Highlights the role of archaeological heritage sites, national parks and protected areas in economic development and social empowerment
- Explores how nature trumps culture and the global implications of the new configurations of heritage