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Beneath the rubble, the Crystal Palace! The surprising persistence of a temporary mega event

Gardner, J; (2018) Beneath the rubble, the Crystal Palace! The surprising persistence of a temporary mega event. World Archaeology , 50 (1) pp. 185-199. 10.1080/00438243.2018.1489734. Green open access

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Abstract

This paper considers the archaeological traces of some of the largest temporary gatherings imaginable: modern cultural mega events such as World's Fairs, Expositions and Olympic Games. Focusing specifically on what is widely accepted as the ‘first’ such event, The Great Exhibition of 1851, its aftermath and the rebuilding of its host structure, the Crystal Palace, the author investigates how mega events’ archaeological traces can provide alternative accounts of the history of temporary spectacles. The author also highlights how an event sometimes becomes conflated with its structure, showing how the Crystal Palace’s materials persisted long after the original gathering was over. Even after event sites take on radically different uses or their structures are moved, altered or totally destroyed, their scant traces can still inspire a desire for resurrection.

Type: Article
Title: Beneath the rubble, the Crystal Palace! The surprising persistence of a temporary mega event
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1080/00438243.2018.1489734
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1080/00438243.2018.1489734
Language: English
Additional information: © 2018 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Keywords: Mega events, contemporary archaeology, London, Crystal Palace, Great Exhibition
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of SandHS > Institute of Archaeology
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of SandHS > Institute of Archaeology > Institute of Archaeology Gordon Square
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10053439
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