Storytelling in Heritage Contexts

Heritage may have different interpretations and meanings to various people however, at its core it represents a thread that runs from the past to the present. It provides a sense of belonging and continuity through the continuing development of historical items and stories. Heritage management secures the significance and development of cultural wealth for future generations. Most cultures around the world have historically made use of oral storytelling to retain, accumulate and transmit information and cultural wealth. Beyond the pure entertainment factor, this mode can be used to convey important information and even for education purposes.

The narrative surrounding heritage sites or items is often interpreted narrowly with a strong adherence to scientific research structure. This approach usually only caters to the single user and lacks emotion which in turn fails to resonate and create impact with intended audiences. Adopting a storytelling approach which employs dramatic and emotive communication methods provides an opportunity to deepen interaction and knowledge transfer

The Survey

A survey was distributed to storytelling professionals and organizations in order to gather information on the current state of Heritage storytelling. The questions required participants to describe their role or different roles within the context of storytelling and also attempted to identify best practice.