The Governance of Safeguarding. Comments on Article 2.3 of UNESCO’s Convention for the Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage

A Gestão da Salvaguarda. Comentários ao Artigo 2.3 da Convenção da UNESCO para a Salvaguarda do Patrimônio Cultural Intangível

Antonio Arantes About the author

Abstract

Reflexions on the key dispositif1 1 My understanding of Foucault’s definition of ‘dispositif’ as applied to heritage theory and practice, as well as other conceptual issues raised in this essay, are discussed in Arantes 2019. adopted by Unesco’s Convention on the Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage (Article 2.3). In these Comments, I initially situate the notion of ‘safeguarding’ in the context of transformations of other preservation instruments which it dialogues and to whose semantic field it belongs. Challenges to its implementation and possibilities opened by this treaty for the protection of what has been designated as ‘folklore and traditional (and popular) culture’2 2 I use this formulation taking as a reference point the Recommendation on the Safeguarding of Traditional Culture and Folklore, adopted by the UNESCO General Conference on 15 November 1989, hereinafter the 1989 Recommendation, cited in the Preamble to the 2003 Convention. are addressed. After offering an interpretation of its textual meaning in the Convention, I seek to explore how this device is articulated to others in this Convention, and to reflect on its possible practical reach.

Keywords:
safeguarding; UNESCO ICH Convention (Art. 2.3); operational directives; folklore and traditional (popular) culture; intangible heritage management

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