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Singapore’s beloved street hawker culture, now a UNESCO ‘Intangible Heritage’

  • Posted By
    10Pointer
  • Categories
    History & Culture
  • Published
    11th January, 2021

Context

  • One of Singapore’s most popular attractions, its vibrant street hawker culture, was designated an Intangible Cultural Heritage by the UNESCO.

Street hawking in Singapore

  • Singapore’s street hawkers are an indelible part of the city-state’s local life. It is one of most popular late-night street food destinations in the city.
  • The hawker centres are representative of Singapore’s multiculturalism, with stalls selling cheap, delicious food of Chinese, Malay, Indian origins, among others.
  • The Covid-19 pandemic, which has left much of the global food and hospitality industry in tatters, also hit Singapore’s street vendors hard.

What are some of the other cultures enlisted from across the world?

  • It includes practices such as yoga from India, reggae music from Jamaica, Finland’s sauna culture and Turkey’s endangered whistled language.

What is UNESCO intangible cultural heritage?

TheUNESCO intangible cultural heritageincludes

  • Traditions or living expressions inherited from our ancestors and passed on to our descendants, such as oral traditions
  • Performing arts
  • Social practices, rituals, festive events
  • Knowledge and practices concerning nature and the universe
  • Knowledge and skills to produce traditional crafts

Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage

S.No.

ICH Element

Year of Inscription

1.      

Tradition of Vedic chanting

2008

2.      

Ramlila, the traditional performance of the Ramayana

2008

3.      

Kutiyattam, Sanskrit theatre

2008

4.      

Ramman, religious festival and ritual theatre of the Garhwal Himalayas, India

2009

5.      

Mudiyettu, ritual theatre and dance drama of Kerala

2010

6.      

Kalbelia folk songs and dances of Rajasthan

2010

7.      

Chhau dance

2010

8.      

Buddhist chanting of Ladakh: recitation of sacred Buddhist texts in the trans-Himalayan Ladakh region, Jammu and Kashmir, India

2012

9.      

Sankirtana, ritual singing, drumming and dancing of Manipur

2013

10.  

Traditional brass and copper craft of utensil making among the Thatheras of Jandiala Guru, Punjab, India

2014

11.  

Yoga

2016

12.  

Nawrouz, Novruz, Nowrouz, Nowrouz, Nawrouz, Nauryz, Nooruz, Nowruz, Navruz, Nevruz, Nowruz, Navruz

2016

13.  

KumbhMela

2017