A series of training workshops on safeguarding intangible cultural heritage (ICH) finished recently in Amman, Jordan. Following capacity building workshops on the implementation of the 2003 Convention in 2016, the UNESCO Amman office and the Ministry of Culture facilitated “Community-based inventorying of intangible cultural heritage” workshops this past May. Held in the northern city of Al-Mafraq, the workshop participants ranged from members of the local community to government officials and national authorities.
The workshops were implemented with an inclusive approach, focusing on rural communities. Participants met and interacted with several key actors in ICH in Jordan. The workshops included a local Sheik explaining Bedouin traditional coffee culture, Nabatean poetry performance in a goat-hair tent and interviews with Druze women about the link between their traditional dress and cultural identity. Hisham, a participant in the workshops, brought his daughters, Katrine and Shahira, along to highlight the importance of transmission in ICH. “Mafraq is portrayed as a dusty desert town with many refugees and we shouldn’t forget about the vibrant talents in this area. We are a family of artists interested in honoring the culture that surrounds us and transmitting our traditions,” he said.