Central Asia in UNESCO World Heritage
This year, the ancient nomadic horse-breeding rites of the Central Asian countries will be inscribed on the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage List. Eight categories were already inscribed on the list on Kazakhstan’s initiative. Meanwhile, there is a huge interest on folk traditions in the Central Asian countries, and much attention is paid to their preservation and promotion.
American tourist Jordan Thurman is learning Kazakh and ‘biye bailau’, ‘aigyr kosu’ and ‘kumys muryndyk’ are not just new words, but new ideas for him. He paid a special visit to Kazakhstan to learn the traditional nomadic culture. The American tourist is planning to open an ethno-village in Almaty in the future.
JORDAN THURMAN, AMERICAN TOURIST:
- My Kazakh name is Zhorabek, I came from Texas. I like Kazakhstan’s nature and fresh air. Kazakh people are very hospitable. ‘Kazy’ is my favorite traditional food. The Kazakh cuisine is the best and the most delicious.
Residents of the ethno-village demonstrated the ancient festive folk rites to the local and foreign tourists, including the so-called horse matchmaking, taming foals and the first mare milk collection. Experts said that inscription of such traditional values on the UNESCO World Heritage List will allow the passing of the traditions from generation to generation.
ORAZALI TOSHMURATOV, PROFESSOR, UZBEKISTAN STATE INSTITUTE OF ARTS AND CULTURE:
- Globalization affects many areas of our lives, including traditions and customs. Thanks to such festivals, folk traditions will be preserved and passed on to the younger generation.
According to the UNESCO rules, intangible cultural heritage includes customs and arts that became part of the peoples’ traditional culture. They include ceremonies and rituals, oral traditions, public holidays, as well as techniques of traditional crafts.