March 08th 2021

#InternationalWomenDay: 10 publications about Heritage and the role of Women

Today in the #InternationalWomensDay we want to share with you some documents related to Women and Heritage.

Here we gather 10 publications related with Women, Gender and Heritage that you may consult or have as a reference. 

1. Women, Intangible Heritage and Development

The UNESCO Intangible Heritage Section activities on the subject of Women, Intangible Heritage and Development are an integral part of continuing programmatic efforts by UNESCO to refine our understanding of intangible cultural heritage and to promote women’s priorities, perspectives and contributions to rethinking of development. This report provides a synthesis of regional feasibility studies and an international expert meeting on ‘Women, Intangible Heritage and Development’ (Tehran, June 2001), in preparation for the development of a future project on this subject. (UNESCO) 

Find it here

2. Women and Intangible Cultural Heritage in southern Africa

Wrote by Manase Kudzai Chiweshe and Patience Mutopo by the Southern African Intangible Cultural Heritage Platform at Chinhoyi University of Technology in May 2019,  this paper analyses how women in southern Africa intersect with ICH as outlined in the 2003 Convention. They highlight the various nuances and complexities involved in understanding the position of women in relation to ICH. The chapter contends that access and participation in culture is a fundamental right and fundamental rights apply to everyone without distinction of any kind including gender. 

Find it here

3. «Not a mere tangential outbreak»: gender, feminism and cultural heritage

Wrote by Professor Silvana Colella, this essay is to provide an overview of recent contributions to the “gender and heritage” debate, focusing in particular on suggestions and recommendations about
how to expand and further advance the gender agenda in the heritage field of research. 

Find it here

4. Participation of indigenous women in the conservation of cultural heritage

In this document, the Latin America and the Caribbean Committee for the Defence of Women's Rights (CLADEM), contribute by talking about how women of indigenous peoples promote and protect the cultural heritage of their peoples in Latin America and the Caribbean, especially through their political and social participation.

Find it here

5. This is a woman’s world (heritage)

This article by IUCN shows the profile of Haifaa Abdulhalim, who works as a female expert in a largely male-dominated sector as nature conservation. She talks about the challenges, and how all women not only deserve equal opportunities, they also have an essential role in effective conservation work on the ground. 

Find it here

6. Gender and Heritage: Performance, Place and Politics

This book edited By Wera Grahn and Ross J. Wilson brings together a group of international scholars to examine the performance, place and politics of gender within heritage. Through a series of case studies, models and assessments, the significance of understanding and working with concepts of gender is demonstrated as a dynamic and reforming agenda. Demonstrating that gender has become an increasingly important area for heritage scholarship, the collection argues that it should also be recognised as a central structuring device within society and the location where a critical heritage studies can emerge.

Where to find it

7. Gender perspectives on cultural heritage and museums 

MUSEUM International, as an international institutional publication, has a duty to review major strategies and programs that foster heritage and culture sharing policies under the United Nations system. The inclusion of art and culture in international development agendas offers a major opportunity to re-appraise the role that women play in contemporary societies and hence to fine-tune development policies. Above all, opening up development policies to culture is an opportunity to step up action to promote gender equality. This recurring theme runs throughout our present issue which seeks to bridge the gap between topics as different as women, heritage and gender equality. 

Find it here

8. Thanks, But We’ll Take It from Here’: Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Women Influencing the Collection of Tangible and Intangible Heritage.

Wrote by Olivia Robinson and Trish Barnard, this paper explores how Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women are represented in major collections in Queensland, Australia, with focus on the Queensland Museum and the State Library of Queensland. Pertinent to this analysis is an insight into the role of indigenous and non-indigenous women as collectors and curators. Fostering a feminine environment has empowered Indigenous women to express their cultural identity and gender perspectives through art and exhibitions, which has led to a reaffirmation of ownership of cultural heritage, and women’s issues generally

Find it here

9. Cultures, Conventions, and the Human Rights of Women:Examining the Convention for Safeguarding Intangible Cultural Heritage, and the Declaration on Cultural Diversity

Wrote by Valentine Moghadam and Manilee Bagheritari, this article explains why there is a need for attention to the human rights of women when implementing the Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage and the Universal Declaration of Cultural Diversity. 

Find it here

10. Women’s representation and participation in UNESCO heritage discourse
Using the case study of the World Heritage Vineyard Landscape of Langhe-Roero and Monferrato (Italy), the author Elena Settimini explores how international and national documents frame gender equality in order to uncover underground power dynamics that risk undermining cultural representation and participation. 

Find it here

Did you know them? Do you know more? What do you think is the role of women in Heritage? Let us know!