Monday, December 13, 2010

Global ICH Update: Falcons, Gongs, and Three Manly Games

I'm always keeping my eye on what's happening around the world in terms of ICH, and I thought I'd post a note on a couple interesting items that came across my desk today.

First up, UNESCO has added falconry to its Intangible Cultural Heritage list. Molly Messick with National Public Radio in the US prepared a short radio doc called "An Honored Tradition, Falconry Still Flies". You can check out the transcript, or download the audio postcard as an mp3.

The Central Highlands gong culture of Vietnam was recognised as a Masterpiece of Oral and Intangible Cultural Heritage by UNESCO in 2006. But the region is being stripped of its cultural heritage as gongs, drums and other tools are sold to feed a thriving trade in ethnic antiques. Read here about how the provincial People's Committee recently approved a policy to provide an annual stipend to traditional gong owners, in an attempt to keep the antiques in the community.

And for you manly men, or those of you who love them, you can check out Mongolia's Naadam Festival, which showcases the three "manly games" of traditional horse racing, wrestling, and archery. The online Mongolia Travel Guide fills you in on the festival.

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