Unesco recognises Lkhon Khol

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Lkhon Khol. Source: Khmer Times, 20181129

via Khmer Times, 29 November 2018: Cambodia’s Lkhon Khol is listed in Unesco’s Intangible Cultural Heritage List. Thailand also intends to list its version of the dance.

Lkhon Khol. Source: Khmer Times, 20181129

Lkhon Khol. Source: Khmer Times, 20181129

Unesco yesterday added Cambodia’s Lkhon Khol on its list of “intangible cultural heritage in need of urgent safeguarding” during an annual meeting of the Intergovernmental Committee for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage in the island nation of Mauritius.

Prime Minister Hun Sen then praised the move on Facebook.

“The decision by the committee is a big national pride,” Mr Hun Sen said. “It happened because of efforts by the government, local artists, civil society and encouragement from the public, which brought us successful results.”

Source: Unesco recognises Lkhon Khol – Khmer Times

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Shan caves awarded as smoke-free heritage site

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Buddha statues inside the Shwe Umin Pagoda Paya, Myanmar. Source Nick Fox / Shutterstock

via Myanmar Times, 26 November 2018: The Southeast Asia Tobacco Control Alliance recognizes the Pindaya Buddhist Caves complex for its efforts in making it a smoke-free site.

Buddha statues inside the Shwe Umin Pagoda Paya, Myanmar. Source Nick Fox / Shutterstock

Buddha statues inside the Shwe Umin Pagoda Paya, Myanmar. Source Nick Fox / Shutterstock

The Southeast Asia Tobacco Control Alliance has honoured Pindaya Caves in Shan State with an award for promoting a healthy environment and preserving the uniqueness of its culture by being a smoke-free heritage site.

The Southeast Asian anti-tobacco advocacy group gave the award to Pindaya Caves at the 6th Regional Meeting of Smoke-Free Cities in the Asia-Pacific Region and the Summit of Smoke-Free Leaders in Hoi An, Vietnam, last week.

Source: Shan caves awarded as smoke-free heritage site | The Myanmar Times

BPCB explores prehistoric rock art in Kisar

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Rock art from Kisar. Source: Antara 20181124

via Antara News, 24 November 2018:

Rock art from Kisar. Source: Antara 20181124

Rock art from Kisar. Source: Antara 20181124

North Maluku Cultural Heritage Preservation Agency (BPCB) explored the legacy of prehistoric rock art in the form of hand-drawn paintings and other motifs on walls of caves on Kisar Island, Southwest Maluku District, Maluku Province.

“We trace the rock art paintings` record and register them as national cultural reserves, so that they can be maintained, for they are the proof of the cultural value of prehistoric civilizations,” North Maluku BPCB Head Muhammad Husni remarked in Wonreli recently.

Based in Ternate, with a working area covering the provinces of Maluku, North Maluku, Papua, and West Papua, the BPCB began the search for prehistoric cultural paintings on Kisar Island since November 17, 2018.

Source: BPCB explores prehistoric rock art in Kisar – ANTARA News

Categories: Indonesia Rock Art


SEAMEO SPAFA Archaeology Education Survey ends next week!

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SEAMEO SPAFA Archaelogy Education Survey

Have you filled up the SEAMEO SPAFA Survey on Archaeology Education in Southeast Asia yet? If you’ve been putting it off, you have only a few days left to get your opinions in.

SEAMEO SPAFA Archaelogy Education Survey

SEAMEO SPAFA Archaelogy Education Survey

This survey is part of my work for SEAMEO SPAFA, and we are looking to understand how and where archaeology is taught in the region, what kinds of skills training is needed, and where do students go after they get their degree. This is the first time a study of this kind has ever been undertaken in the region. So far we have received over 300 responses from Southeast Asia and beyond, and the survey will close on December 5 so if you haven’t taken it, please help me out and fill it up!


UNESCO’s World Heritage program has lost its way

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A new book by Lynn Meskel discusses how the original mission of the Unesco World Heritage list has its focus distorted from conservation and preservation to tourism and economic benefits. The book is called A Future in Ruins: UNESCO, World Heritage, and the Dream of Peace

Created in 1946 to help establish peace through international cooperation in a world ravaged by two colossal wars, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) hoped to change the “minds of men and women,” as its constitution says.

The agency aimed to achieve that mission through education, cultural exchange and conservation of heritage sites.

But that utopian ambition has gotten lost, according to Stanford anthropology Professor Lynn Meskell, who has spent the last eight years researching the history of the organization and its World Heritage program.

Today, most countries seem to care more about getting their historic sites onto the World Heritage List in order to benefit from UNESCO’s brand rather than discuss conservation and preservation, Meskell said.

Source: UNESCO’s World Heritage program has lost its way | Stanford News

[Book] Khmer Temples in Eastern Thailand

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Readers may be interested in Asger Mollerup’s new book on Khmer sites in Northeast Thailand.

This book is the 2nd of three about Ancient Khmer sites outside the present day Cambodia and the first comprehensive inventory of ancient Khmer sites in eastern Thailand since the now more than one century-old works of Étienne Aymonier, Étienne Lunet de Lajonquière, and Major Erik Seidenfaden, describing some 170 Khmer sites in the provinces of Khorat and Buriram in the first two parts of the book.
Part 3 presents the ancient overland route from Angkor to Phimai marked by seventeen fire-shelters (‘dharmasala’), mentioned in a 12th century inscription. Also fire-shrines and fire-offerings are described.

Source: Khmer Temples in Eastern Thailand

Categories: Angkor Books Thailand


Sabah’s Mansuli Valley has archaeotourism potential

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Source: The Star, 22 November 2018

via The Star, 22 November 2018:

Source: The Star, 22 November 2018

Source: The Star, 22 November 2018

The little known Mansuli Valley, one of the oldest valleys in Borneo, may soon be on the map of Indiana Jones wannabes.

It is likely to beckon visitors who are keen on archaeotourism or interested in archaeo­logy and historical sites.

Located about 30km from Sabah’s Lahad Datu district, there is evidence that the area was inhabited about 235,000 years ago.

Source: Sabah’s Mansuli Valley has archaeotourism potential – Nation | The Star Online

Categories: Borneo Malaysia Tourism


Management of large-scale rock art areas Survey

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Researchers at Griffith University are conducting a survey about rock art landscape management – help them out through the link below:

This research is part of an Australian Research Council (ARC) funded program called ‘Australian rock art history, conservation and Indigenous well-being’ at Griffith University. The overall aim of the project is to ensure that rock art landscapes are better conserved, appreciated and understood for the benefit of local communities and future generations.

This survey has been designed by Dr. Sally K. May and Prof. Paul S.C. Taçon in order to better understand national and international trends in the management of large-scale rock art landscapes. The information will be collated for a report and publications on this topic.

For this study, we broadly define a large-scale rock art area as one in which more than 10 individual rock art sites are found. While the definition of a separate ‘site’ is different internationally, for simplicity we would define it here as a place with rock art clearly separated from other places (by distance or geology). The size of the actual area is not our major concern, rather it is the number of individual sites within that landscape that you are involved in helping to care for. If you are unsure please feel free to contact us for clarification.

Source: Management of large-scale rock art areas Survey

[Conference] Heritage Protection: The Asian Experience

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Readers in Bangkok may be interested in this heritage conference in January next year.

The Pan-Asia Conference on “Heritage Protection: The Asian Experience”
Date:  Friday 25th and Saturday 26th January 2019
Place: At The Siam Society Under Royal Patronage, Bangkok, Thailand

At a time of rapid economic, technological, and social changes, the Siam Society Under Royal Patronage, a leading Thai civil society organisation in the field of cultural heritage together with the Ministry of Culture and Tourism Authority of Thailand, is hosting a conference entitled “Heritage Protection: The Asian Experience”, held in the English language, in Bangkok, on 25th – 26th January 2019. The conference will bring together Asian thinkers, professionals, and practitioners in the field of cultural heritage protection who will examine the meaning of “Culture”, “Cultural Heritage”, and “Cultural Heritage Protection” in Asian nations.

A well-developed corpus of conventions, guidelines, and internationally accepted best practices for cultural heritage protection already exists, which largely arose out of successful European experiences in heritage protection in the 19th and 20th centuries; hence, it is only natural that heritage protection theories reflect such European experiences. This conference invites Asian speakers to describe cultural heritage from an Asian perspective, recognising the diversity of cultures and cultural heritage protection experiences across the Asian continent.

The speakers will look at various aspects of the Asian experience of cultural heritage protection within diverse Asian settings to determine: what are the main obstacles to successful heritage protection; what works and what does not; what lessons can be drawn for Asian people from Asian experiences? Furthermore, they will suggest cultural heritage protection strategies most likely to be effective within the Asian socio-cultural and political contexts, focusing on community involvement, the role of law, and entrepreneurs’ contributions.

The conference will be divided into four sub-themes, each addressed in one of the four half-day panel discussions:

  • Heritage is the living present of the past.
  • People taking ownership of heritage.
  • How to put law to work on behalf of heritage protection?
  • How can entrepreneurial energies complement heritage protection?

Speakers from twelve nations will participate on the panels, each delivering a 20-minute oral summary of the main points of their respective papers. (The abstract of each paper will be published in the Conference Booklet to be distributed to all the attendees.) A moderator will pose questions, solicit audience participation, and conclude the sessions. At the end of the conference, two seminar rapporteurs will synthesize key points and themes that arose during the four sessions. A book compiling the conference papers will come out in 2019 for widespread distribution throughout the Asian region.

Please find the program and more information about speakers and registration at the attached file or visit the conference webpage at conference2019.siam-society.org