Fourteenth session of the Intergovernmental Committee: Bogota, Colombia, from 9 to 14 December 2019
© UNESCO/Juan Peña
14 December 2019

The 2019 International Year of Indigenous Languages is a time to reflect on the importance of safeguarding indigenous peoples’ living heritage by recognizing the vital role that indigenous languages play in ensuring the continued transmission of their heritage to future generations. To celebrate the rich diversity of indigenous languages, UNESCO is presenting the exhibition Sounds of living heritage, a journey through the indigenous languages at the 14th session of the Intergovernmental Committee of the 2003 Convention (9-14 December 2019) in Bogotá.

The exhibition will take visitors on a journey through indigenous languages from around the world. From the deserts of the Kalahari in Southern Africa, to the islands of the Pacific, and the bustling market of Jemaa el-Fna Square in Morocco, the exhibition will highlight indigenous languages as important vehicles for transmitting cultural practices and expressions from generation to generation and connecting indigenous communities to their land and environment. Their disappearance threatens the continued practice of living heritage, invariably leading to the loss of vital social, cultural and ecological knowledge. This exhibition is therefore a reminder of how vital indigenous languages are in maintaining the world’s cultural diversity.


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