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Ghana’s Vanishing Past: Development, Antiquities, and the Destruction of the Archaeological Record

Summary of Article , 2004

This article reviews the history of cultural resource management in Ghana, and discusses challenges to the successful preservation of Ghana’s cultural heritage. The authors identified weak legal framework, lack of political action, limited relevant public education, insufficient funding, illicit trade in antiquities and the lack of an integrated development framework that stresses cultural impact assessment before the commencement of land altering projects as the causes of the widespread destruction of archaeological sites and historic buildings. The authors suggested that using indigenous laws and attitudes toward preservation, such as the phenomenon where certain landscapes are declared as sacred, in addition to a reversal of the aforementioned drawbacks could help stem the destruction of the country’s heritage.