2021-03-30 CONFERENCE PANEL III: Acknowledging Intangible Heritage as part of future heritage past

08:00-11:30 (UTC)

This event is part of a 2-day Conference on March 29-30, including:
SESSION I (March 29): Monuments of Oppression
SESSION II (March 29): Oppression from Monuments
SESSION III (March 30): Acknowledging Intangible Heritage as part of future heritage past
SESSION IV (March 30): Caring for future Worlds? SDGs within Spaces and Places of Heritage



Session Moderator: Vire Komolafe

This session seeks to focus on the value and place of intangible heritage and sustainability. Among diverse communities across the world, tangible heritage is inseparable from intangible cultural practices. How might World Heritage adopt an approach that more thoroughly recognises the interconnectivity between these heritage forms? Furthermore, how should World Heritage confront and address the ways that certain cultural knowledge, skills and histories are deliberately attacked, invalidated, or erased? Exploring these areas is important for highlighting how particular systems marginalise identities, groups and indigenous people, eroding their heritage. It also engenders wider debate on the strategies that could be used to support and strengthen heritage practices (particularly those under threat) for future generations. This is crucial when examples of intangible heritage can serve as vehicles of resistance to types of political/economic domination.

Reflecting on why place, sites and objects are often emphasised over less tangible forms of heritage leads to conversations about the structure of World Heritage. How does race, gender, class and nationality factor into who gets to decide which forms of heritage are elevated over others in UNESCO systems? Integrating varied perspectives that recognise the links between tangible/intangible heritage enables some reflection on the role that certain cultural values, knowledge and practice play in future sustainability. Examples of this might include the safeguarding of natural heritage and wildlife, and engagement in non- exploitative/non-extractive economic/farming activities that protect the environment.

More details follow soon!