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Return Kulangsu to Where it Used to be in the World Cultural Map[2016-08-26]
    (Articles and Pictures by Gong Xiaowan and Intern Su Yannong) Yesterday morning, the first Innovative Asia Cultural Development International Forum declared its opening in Kulangsu. The theme for this year’s forum was “Island and Connection”。 At the forum, scholars published their articles on the protection and development of Kulangsu. Besides, a great number of them focused on its application to be included in the World Heritage List, and they also discussed issues concerning cultural communities and cultural tourist attractions.
    The theme “Island and Connection” was of great practical significance and pertinence, and it fitted well with the protection and development of the island. The “connection” here had two meanings. On the one hand, the island should be connected to the past, since its innovation and development would be based on its historical prosperity and cultural heritages. We need to put in the first place the protection and exploration of its cultural connotations so that we could present its historical and cultural charm. On the other hand, the island should be connected with the world, for it used to be closely connected with the outside world as a public international community. Therefore, it is worth thinking that, how, in the new era, we could restore the connections, the capability of innovation and its position in the world cultural map. The purpose of the forum was to explore the direction for the reconnection of Kulangsu and the past and the world.
    Jiang Yufeng, the Associate Dean of China Academy of Art, remarked that, as the cultural Exchange center Kulangsu had its diversity, openness and inclusiveness. Those characteristics fitted the internationalism and contemporaneity of the forum
    The forum was guided by China Academy of Art and the publicity department of the municipal Party committee. It was also co-sponsored by the School of Kulangsu Arts Study of the academy and the Administrative Committee of Kulangsu-Wanshishan Scenic and Historic Area. The forum lasted for two days.
    Point of View
    Michael Turner
    The development of Tourism in Kulangsu
    Should not Contradict Cultural Inheritance
    “I think Kulangsu mirrors the whole city and it is rich in historical and cultural resources. It’s important to protect her. To make tourism development coordinate with cultural inheritance is a big challenge” When it came to the co-existence and development of multiple cultures in the city, Michael Turner, the president of the committee of urban planning of UNESCO pointed out that during the development of the new era, we should put more emphasis on intangible contents, such as the cultural heritage including music, literature, history and so on.
    He also said that, it was inevitable to abandon some traditions during the innovation of the city. But when the function changed, we could preserve its form. For example, Venice, the city of water, has become a modern city, but its form was well preserved, such as the river ways, boats, and traditional architecture.
    He also commented that, the purpose was not protection itself, but to make the society more inclusive, harmonious and sustainable through the urban development. Meanwhile, we should not destroy the natural and cultural environments due to our pursuit of high efficiency, and should preserve its original nature.
    Xavier Rachae Funt
    The Urban Development Design
    Should be Coordinated with the Life of Citizens
    Xavier Rachae Funt, professor of narrative environment department in Central Saint Martins College of Art and design London, pointed out that Kulangsu was a complex cultural integration. There were many questions which remained to be discussed. For example, during his research he found it worth thinking that who is the dominator of the culture in Kulangsu, residents or visitors. The cultural keynote here was influenced by its residents while the future choice and direction was in the hand of visitors. This was very special for the island in culture.
    He remarked that, whether the design for the city’s development was sustainable depended on whether it could be coordinated with its residents and also recognized by them. He had seen that some designs was strongly rejected by local people and thus they had to be abandoned. But here, he sensed the intimate connection between the urban design and the life of the residents. At the same time, he hoped that in the future urban designers could pay more attention to cultural inheritance of the local community and the history, for they were truly supporting the urban development.