Recommendation on the Safeguarding of Traditional Culture and Folklore (1989)

Recommendation on the Safeguarding of Traditional Culture and Folklore.

Preface: The Recommendation on the Safeguarding of Traditional Culture and Folklore was adopted by the General Conference of UNESCO (25th Session), Paris, 17 Oct.-16 Nov., 1989.

The Recommendation approved by the General Assembly concerns the preservation of the intangible aspects of heritage: traditional culture and folklore. The fragility of the intangible heritage, particularly with regard to oral traditions, is noted. The document defines the nature of folklore and its forms-language, literature, music, dance, games, mythology, rituals, customs, handicrafts, architecture and other arts-and recommends conservation strategies. These include:

  • documentation of traditions,
  • establishment of archives, and
  • creation of museums for folklore;
  • support for transmitters of traditions.
The document recommends development of educational programs to encourage the study of folklore and calls for scientific research regarding the preservation of folklore. Finally, the Recommendation notes the negative impact of industrial culture and mass media on traditional culture and calls for support for folk traditions to counter these effects.




The General Conference of UNESCO (25th Session), Paris, 17 Oct.-16 Nov., 1989


  • It considers that folklore forms part of the universal heritage of humanity and that it is a powerful means of bringing together different peoples and social groups and of asserting their cultural identity.
  • It notes folklore’s social, economic, cultural and political importance, its role in the history of the people, and its place in contemporary culture.
  • It underlines the specific nature and importance of folklore as an integral part of cultural heritage and living culture.
  • It recognizes the extreme fragility of the traditional forms of folklore, particularly those aspects relating to oral tradition and the risk that they might be lost, and stresses the need in all countries for recognition of the role of folklore and the danger it faces from multiple factors.




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About Sunney 84 Articles
I received his B.S., M.S., and Ph.D. degrees in 1996, 2003, and 2006, respectively, from China University of Geosciences, Wuhan, China; Hefei University of Technology, Hefei, China; and Chinese Academy of Sciences, Hefei, China. From 1996 to 2006, I worked at the School of Computer Science and Technology, Huaibei Normal University, Huaibei, China, as a Lecturer and an Associate Professor. From January 2007 to August 2013, I worked at Wenzhou University, Wenzhou, China. I am currently a Professor at Communication University of Zhejiang, Hangzhou, China. I am the coauthor of more than 90 articles, which mostly were published in peer-reviewed journals.

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