April Is Heritage Awareness Month

The Ministry of Culture will be observing April as Heritage Awareness month. Parliamentary Secretary in the Ministry of Culture, Senator Brenda Hood, said that Cabinet endorsed the idea as part of Government’s effort to foster a better understanding about Grenada’s traditions and customs, as it pertains to both tangible and intangible heritage.

Focusing on the wider benefit of the island’s heritage, the month of activities will involve educational awareness in various communities. “The focus will be on everything, from our food and music to our architecture and cultural norms — just about everything that makes us who we are.” She explained that activities will be link to the new tourism brand of ‘Pure Grenada’, “We have to embrace our pureness and protect it.”

The ministry will also be taking an inventory of the island’s intangible and tangible heritage, as Grenada is a signatory to the UNESCO Conventions on Tangible and Intangible Heritage. “Such an exercise will provide us the opportunity to know what we have and at the same time have access to funding from UNESCO to either preserve or maintain traditional activities that qualifies for assistance,” Senator Hood said.

According to the convention, Intangible Cultural Heritage means the practices, representations, expressions, knowledge, skills — as well as the instruments, objects, artefacts and cultural spaces associated therewith — that communities, groups and, in some cases, individuals recognise as part of their cultural heritage.

This intangible cultural heritage, transmitted from generation to generation, is constantly recreated by communities and groups in response to their environment, their interaction with nature and their history, and provides them with a sense of identity and continuity, thus promoting respect for cultural diversity and human creativity.

Tangible culture is the counterpart of culture which is tangible or touchable, whereas intangible culture includes song, music, drama, skills, cuisine, annual festivals, crafts, and the other parts of culture that can be recorded but cannot be touched and interacted with, without a vehicle for the culture.

by Linda Straker

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