Inscribed in 2009 (4.COM) on the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity
- Katta Ashula
Katta Ashula (literally ‘big song’) is a type of traditional song that forms part of the identity of various peoples of the Ferghana Valley in Uzbekistan, which is also home to Tajiks, Uyghurs and Turks, and of some regions of Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Kazakhstan. An original genre, Katta Ashula combines performing arts, singing, instrumental music, Eastern poetry and sacred rites. It covers a range of subjects, from love to philosophical and theological concepts of the universe and nature, while leaving some room for improvisation. Transmitted orally from master to pupil from one generation to another during a demanding apprenticeship, it is interpreted by a minimum of two and a maximum of five singers. Nowadays, Katta Ashula is an important expression of Uzbek cultural identity that can promote dialogue between cultures. To keep this tradition viable, festivals, contests and various other activities already organized by the Government of Uzbekistan and the local authorities are to be reinforced through the introduction of programmes for transmitting the tradition to young people and research (creation of a database, organization of conferences, publications, etc.).
Decision 4.COM 13.75
The Committee (…) decides that [this element] satisfies the criteria for inscription on the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity, as follows:
- R.1: Katta Ashula is a singing tradition that is cherished by the community as a symbol of its identity and continuity that it endeavours to transmit from generation to generation;
- R.2: The inscription of the element on the Representative List would greatly contribute to the visibility and awareness of intangible cultural heritage at the local, national and international levels, and help ensure the element’s continuity and transmission;
- R.3: Various safeguarding measures at different levels, such as the organization of festivals, traditional competitions of performers, legal measures, school programmes, or documentation have been implemented and are proposed, with the expressed commitment of the communities and the State;
- R.4: The element has been nominated in a process that involved the communities, cultural groups, individuals, civil society institutions and foundations, and NGOs, and free, prior and informed consent has been given by community representatives in a jointly signed statement;
- R.5: The element is included in an inventory that is currently being prepared by the Ministry of Culture and Sports.
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