Safeguarding the Intangible Cultural Heritage & Promoting the Diversity of Garifuna Cultural Expressions

By José Francisco Ávila | June 06, 2014
  • Author: José Francisco Ávila
  • Journal: Garifuna Coalition USA, Inc.

© 2014 by José Francisco Ávila, All Rights Reserved

As we enter the last week of Garifuna Arts & Culture Appreciation Month, in honor of the 13th anniversary of the UNESCO proclamation of the Garifuna Language, Dance and Music as a Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity, on May 18th, 2001; we will transition from Safeguarding The Garifuna Intangible Cultural Heritage to the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Garifuna Cultural Expressions.

 

Next year we will celebrate the tenth Anniversary of the UNESCO Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions. At a time when countries are striving to reach the Millennium Development Goals and the world is shaping a new post-2015 global development agenda, the United Nations system and its leaders are working to ensure that the importance of culture is reflected as both a driver and enabler of sustainable human development in future development goals and targets.[1] In preparation for the post-2015 global development agenda, we will feature participants in the Garifuna Cultural diversity.

Cultural diversity Refers to the manifold ways in which the cultures of groups and societies find expression. These expressions are passed on within and among groups and societies.  The term “Cultural expressions” refers to the various ways in which the creativity of individuals and social groups takes shape and manifests itself. These manifestations include expressions transmitted by words (literature, tales…), sound (music), images (photos, films) by activities (dance, theatre) or objects (sculptures, paintings).

Cultural diversity is made manifest not only through the varied ways in which the cultural heritage of humanity is expressed, augmented and transmitted through the variety of cultural expressions, but also through diverse modes of artistic creation, production, dissemination, distribution and enjoyment, whatever the means and technologies used.[2]

 

The production and dissemination of cultural expressions increasingly conform to an industrial and economic logic. Cultural expressions are transmitted largely through “cultural activities, goods and services”, which have become the main vehicles of culture.

 

Cultural activities, goods and services, refers to those activities, goods and services, which at the time they are considered as a specific attribute, use or purpose, embody or convey cultural expressions, irrespective of the commercial value they may have. Cultural activities may be an end in themselves, or they may contribute to the production of cultural goods and services.

 

At a time when countries are striving to reach the Millennium Development Goals and the world is shaping a new post-2015 global development agenda, the United Nations system and its leaders are working to ensure that the importance of culture is reflected as both a driver and enabler of sustainable human development in future development goals and targets; it is our objective to make sure that the will be active participants participants in the new agenda.

 


[1]Creative Economy Report 2013 Special Edition – Widening Local Development Pathways

[2]Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions

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