Research Handbook on Contemporary Intangible Cultural Heritage
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Research Handbook on Contemporary Intangible Cultural Heritage

Law and Heritage

Edited by Charlotte Waelde, Catherine Cummings, Mathilde Pavis and Helena Enright

Bringing together key insights from expert legal and heritage academics and practitioners, this book explores the existence and safeguarding of contemporary forms of intangible cultural heritage (ICH). Providing a detailed analysis of the international legal frameworks relevant to ICH, the contributing authors then go on to challenge the pervasive view that heritage is about ‘old’ tangible objects by highlighting the existence, role and importance of contemporary forms of ICH to modern society.
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Chapter 14: Living cultural heritage in the Netherlands: the debate on the Dutch tradition of Sinterklaas

Lucky Belder and Aydan Figaroa


Is the celebration of Sinterklaas in the Netherlands an example of intangible cultural heritage to be recognised and protected by the UNESCO Convention on the Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage? This chapter regards the position of local communities and their role in the system of establishing national inventories in the UNESCO Convention and in the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, while taking account of the escalating debate on the Dutch Sinterklaas tradition in the context of new insights on implicit forms of racism and white innocence in a post-colonial Dutch society.

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