Loss of cultural heritage

Visualization of narrower problems
Sacrificing a cultural heritage
Ignorance of cultural heritage
Lack of access to cultural heritage
Unknown cultural heritage
Uncommunicated cultural heritage
Lost vitality of cultural heritage
Failure to pass on cultural heritage
Insufficient cultural heritage transmission
Lack of awareness of past heritage
Fragmented recognition of common heritage
Fragmented celebration of cultural heritage
Popularly devalued cultural heritage
Large libraries, art galleries and museums have considerable proportions of their collections in storage areas inaccessible to the general public due to the cost of display space, operating costs, and the need to adequately protect their holdings from damage or theft. As a result, ever smaller proportions of cultural heritage are actually suitably displayed to permit casual browsing, and in many libraries browsing is no longer possible. Each item must be specially requested on the basis of prior knowledge of its existence.
1. The insatiable appetite of museums for material has resulted in many hastily acquired collections without adequate documentation for each item's cultural or historical context. Not only are collections poorly accessible, they are not always well identified and catalogued, so that retrieval is doubly difficult. In the case of libraries, the lack of access is in part due to the flooding of the world by printed matter, most of it of an ephemeral nature. Books of little worth cause cultural pollution encrusting in libraries the books embodying the cultural heritage. Truly current general collections are no longer possible and libraries resort to dispersal and fragmentation in order to service specific groups of readers in limited subject areas.

2. Rich or poor, each country possesses a civilization handed down by their ancestors: institutions called for by life in this world, and higher manifestations of the life of the spirit, manifestations of an artistic, intellectual and religious character. When the latter possess true human values, it would be grave error to sacrifice them to the former. A people that would act in this way would thereby lose the best of its patrimony; in order to live, it would be sacrificing its reasons for living. Christ's teaching also applies to people: "What does it profit a man to gain the whole world if he suffers the loss of his soul". (Papal Encyclical, Populorum Progressio, 26 Mar 1967).

(F) Fuzzy exceptional problems