PBS NewsHour Tuesday: “Culture at Risk” segment to examine tourism vs. preservation at Myanmar’s ancient Bagan Buddhist site

Tourists pay $350 for a 40-minute balloon ride at sunrise over the temples and pagodas in Bagan. Photo by Mary Jo Brooks/PBS NewsHour

Tourists pay $350 for a 40-minute balloon ride at sunrise over the temples and pagodas in Bagan

PBS NewsHour will launch its “Culture at Risk” segment today, April 15, with a report from Myanmar, including an examination of the efforts to restore Bagan, “the site of what’s said to be the highest concentration of Buddhist architecture of any place in the world.” Will the site — with more than 2,000 temples and pagodas, some of which are more than 1,000 years old — be preserved according to its original spiritual vision? Or, as PBS correspondent Jeffrey Brown asked while researching the piece, will the lure of tourist revenue result in Bagan being “turned into a kind of theme park…’loved to death,’ as has been the fate of some other great archaeological sites”? Tune in tonight, or watch the episode once it’s uploaded here. Photo by Mary Jo Brooks/PBS NewsHour.