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Posted on April 12th, 2014, by

Today, the historic preservation plays an important part in the cultural life of the contemporary society because the historic heritage needs preservation. Otherwise, the society will lose the historic connection with its past and those generations, who accumulated knowledge, technology, works of art and other achievements, contemporary people can use in abundance. However, the historic preservation is not always accurate and responsible in face of history. At this point, it is possible to refer to the book Historic Preservation and Imagined West by J.M. Morley, who uncovers the wide gap that may exist between historical facts and truth, on the one hand, the historic preservation policy, on the other. In the course of her study, Morley uncovers substantial differences between the historic past and the historic preservation policy conducted in Albuquerque, Denver and Seattle. The author points out that such negligence of historic facts leads to the shift of identity of present generation of people living in Albuquerque, Denver and Seattle, because people inhabiting those cities perceive their historic past through remnants of historic locations which perform not only the historic or cultural but also economic function being very important attractions for tourists visiting Albuqerque, Denver and Seattle. Therefore, the book written by Morley helps to reveal the identity shift in communities of Albuquerque, Denver and Seattle which have occurred under the impact of the preservation policy that failed to mirror the historic truth about the past of these cities and their communities.

Morley conducts the study of five areas, including Old Town Albuquerque, Larimer Square and LoDo in Denver, and Pioneer Square and Pike Place in Seattle. She focuses on the historic locations which have preserved their authenticity. To put it more precisely, in the course of her study, the author reveals that these historic locations rather seem to have preserved their authenticity than they have really preserved their authenticity. The author points out that there is substantial difference between the original sight and life of communities of Albuerque, Denver and Seattle in the past compared to the present life of those communities.

At the same time, the author agrees that the historic locations of Albuquerque, Denver and Seattle did not change much, especially compared to other parts of the city, which have changed much faster and more significantly than Old Town Albuquerque, Larimer Square and LoDo in Denver, and Pioneer Square and Pike Place in Seattle. The author points out that changes occurred to make the locations more tourist-attractive. Morley argues that the main point of the historic preservation was the expected positive economic effect from the preservation of the authenticity of the five locations she has studied in her book.

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