16.05.2011 -

Tolstoy's personal library and oldest Iranian mathematics and astrology book amongst new nominations

More than 80 remarkable documentary items and collections from all parts of the world will be considered for inscription on the Memory of the World Register during a meeting of the 14 experts of the International Advisory Committee (IAC) of UNESCO'S Memory of the World Programme in Manchester (UK) from 22 to 25 May.

Collections proposed for inscription on the Register this year include the most complete compendium of traditional Chinese medicine (Ben Cao Gang Mu, written in the 16th century); the archives of the 20th century Austrian composer Arnold Schönberg; Iran's oldest book on mathematics and astrology, Al-Tafhim li Awa'il Sana'at al-Tanjim, by the renowned Abu-Rayhan al-Biruni (973-1048 AD); the personal library of Russian writer Leo Tolstoy (including manuscripts, photographs and films), and Trinidad and Tobago's Constantine Collection of documents pertaining to the extraordinary life of Trinidad-born Learie Nicholas Constantine, Baron Constantine of Maraval (1901-1971), who after gaining fame as a cricketer rose to prominence as a pioneer in human rights issues in the United Kingdom and beyond.


After consideration by the Committee, the inscriptions will be submitted to UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova for her endorsement before they are added to the Memory of the World Register of 193 documentary items inscribed to date.


The Memory of the World Programme has been designed to promote and preserve important documentary collections, notably through digitization. Items span the gamut of material supports and cultures: from the German expressionist cinema masterpiece, Metropolis of 1927, to the "Buljo jikji simche yojeol", also known as Jikji. Containing the essentials of Zen Buddhism, this volume, produced in Cheongju (Korea) in 1377, is the world's known book to have been printed using movable metal type.


Another important item on the agenda of the <a href="http://www.unesco.org/new/en/communication-and-information/flagship-project-activities/memory-of-the-world/about-the-programme/international-advisory-committee-iac/meetings-of-the-international-advisory-committee-iac/10th-meeting-of-the-international-advisory-committee/">IAC meeting</a> concerns a proposal to create an academic course in Memory of the World studies.


The Manchester meeting will follow the <a href="http://www.unesco.org/new/en/communication-and-information/resources/events/calendar-of-events/events-websites/fourth-international-conference-on-the-memory-of-the-world/">Fourth International Conference of the UNESCO Memory of the World Programme</a> (Warsaw, Poland, 18 to 21 May) on the status and development of the Programme and contemporary issues of documentary heritage preservation, promotion and accessibility.

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