UNESCO List of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity – IAS Notes

UNESCO List of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity is published by Intergovernmental committee for the protecting and safeguarding of it. It aims is to provide better protection of important intangible cultural heritage worldwide.

There are total 12 Intangible Cultural Heritage in the list of India.

1. Koodiyattam – The Earliest classical dramatic art form of Kerala – 2008

Koodiyattam is the earliest classical dramatic art form of Kerala. Koodiyattam literally means “acting together”. Koodiyattam used to be a combined dance drama conducted by the Chakkiyars (a caste among Hindus), who provided the male cast and the Nangiars (women of the Nambiyar caste), playing the female roles.

Chakkiyars – Playing male cast.

Nangiars – Playing female cast.

See Also: Indian Classical Dance – Performing Arts Notes

It is celebrated for 6 – 20 days and based on Hindu Mythology. Koodiyattam is a dramatic presentation in Sanskrit, with the exception of the Vidushaka, who is the only character speaking in Malayalam.

Musical Instruments – Mizhavu

2. Ramlila – the Traditional Performance of the Ramayana – 2008

Ramlila is the famous local dramatic art form of Uttar Pradesh which is organized before the famous festival Dussehra. It is performed about to 10 nights. Ramlila is performed on lyrics, dance etc of Ramayana.

3. The Tradition of Vedic Chanting – 2008

According to the sacred foundation of their religion and Hindus Knowledge, it is the world’s oldest surviving cultural traditions. It is also known as “Prachin Jivit Akshat Vachik Parmpara” in Hindi.

4. Ramman: Religious Festival and Ritual Theatre of the Garhwal Himalayas – 2009

Ramman is the ancient festival and traditional dramatic art form of Gadwal region. It is celebrated by the Hindus in Salur Dungra village of Chamoli district of Uttarakhand. In this festival, people worshipped village God “Bhumiyal”. They sing a song of Jagar.

Jagar – Musical song of local mythological stories.

5. Novruz, Nowrouz, Nooruz, Navruz, Nauroz, Nevruz – 2009

Novruz is considered as New Year holiday and the beginning of Spring. There are various ceremonies, rituals, and cultural events held within every family and community. It enjoys traditional games, special cuisines, respect for nature, performances in music and dances, oral expressions and literature, handicrafts and painting masterpieces (in particular miniature arts). Values of peace and solidarity, reconciliation and neighbourhood, cultural diversity and tolerance, healthy lifestyle and renewal of living environment are transmitted from generation to generation.

6. Mudiyettu: Ritual Theatre and Dance Drama, Kerala, India – 2010

Mudiyettu is a ritual theatre form of Kerala based on the mythological tale of the battle between Goddess Kali and Darika, an evil king. It is a community ritual in which the entire village participates.

7. Kalbelia: Folk Songs and Dances, Rajasthan, India – 2010

Kalbelia Dance is an expression of the Kalbelia community’s way of life as snake charmers. The Kalbelias are reputed to compose lyrics spontaneously and improvise songs impromptu during a performance.

8. Chhau Dance – 2010

Chhau is a major dance tradition of eastern India. It has three distinct styles Seraikella, Mayurbhanj and Purulia named Masks are an integral part of the dances of Seraikella and Purulia. Chhau dance has a significant role in the celebration of the spring festival Chaitra Parva.

Seraikella – Jharkhand – With Mask

Purulia – West Bengal – With the mask

Mayurbhanj – Odissa – Without Mask

9. Buddhist chanting of Ladakh: recitation of sacred Buddhist texts in the trans-Himalayan Ladakh region, Jammu and Kashmir, India – 2012

The recitation of ancient sacred Buddhist texts is chanted every day by the monks living in various monasteries and following different sects of Buddhism in the trans-Himalayan region of Ladakh in India.

10. Sankirtan, ritual singing, drumming and dancing of Manipur – 2013

Sankirtana is the artistic dance form of Manipuri worship. It mainly belongs to the God Krishna and their tales. It employs musical instruments like drums and cymbals. The artists play these instruments and dance at the same time.

11. Thatheras of Jandiala Guru: Traditional brass and copper craft of utensil making, Punjab, India – 2014

The craft of the Thatheras of Jandiala Guru represents the traditional technique of manufacturing brass and copper utensils in Punjab. The technique itself, along with the mud-brick kiln, traditional implements, specific type of wood chips, and the specialized process of hammering the metal sheets, constitutes the traditional skills and knowledge systems of the community.

12. Yoga – 2016

Yoga essentially is a traditional and time-honoured Indian holistic system of personal, physical, mental and spiritual wellness focusing on all-around unification of body, mind and soul. It is a perfect example of a lively interaction between the precepts and practice.

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