This presentation discusses the role that the material and intellectual heritage of a community can play in shaping and reshaping its identity, along a historical continuum. With a brief history of the Ismaili Muslims in focus, the presentation highlights some of the challenges faced by the modern Ismaili community in conservation of, and engaging with their heritage, dating back over a millennium. The talk features the heritage conservation initiatives organised by the community, especially in digital media, together with some of the finest pieces from the institutional archives and collections.
Zehra Lalji is among the key contributors who created the heritage sites archive at the Institute of Ismaili Studies (IIS). At present, she serves the Institute as the Website Productions Officer, where she is leading a number of creative digital adaptations based on the Institute’s published research.