Zainab Bahrani: People and their monuments
and their works of art are entangled in this region. In recent years, there’s been a great deal
of focus on destruction of heritage sites and antiquities and museums. People have suffered tremendously, but the
multi-layered history of this landscape is far more complicated than that. These are very, very ancient works, yet they
still speak to us. They still address the same sorts of issues
that concern us today—about life and what it means, about mortality, about loss, about
sorrow, about faith and gratitude. All of these basic human concepts and ideas
make the ancient works still powerful today.