Q. Cultural diversity between as well as within countries is as essential for humankind as biodiversity is for nature. Do you agree? Discuss.
– What is Culture and Cultural Diversity
– Necessity of Cultural Diversity and Why shall we preserve it
– What can be done to Preserve the Culture
What is Culture:
Culture is regarded as the set of distinctive spiritual, material, intellectual and emotional features of society or a social group, and that it encompasses, in addition to art and literature, lifestyles, ways of living together, value systems, traditions and beliefs.
Defining Cultural Diversity:
Culture takes diverse forms across time and space. This diversity is embodied in the uniqueness and plurality of the identities of the groups and societies making up humankind.
Necessity of Cultural Diversity:
Cultural diversity is as necessary for humankind as biodiversity is for nature. It aspires to have greater solidarity on the basis of recognition of cultural diversity, of awareness of the unity of humankind, and of the development of intercultural exchanges.
Thus, Cultural diversity acts as a source of:
– Exchange of ideas
Why shall we preserve it:
The common heritage of humanity needs to be recognized and affirmed for the benefit of present and future generations because:
– In our increasingly diverse societies, it is essential to ensure harmonious interaction among people and groups with plural, varied and dynamic cultural identities as well as their willingness to live together.
– Policies for the inclusion and participation of all citizens are guarantees of social cohesion, the vitality of civil society and peace. Thus defined, cultural pluralism gives policy expression to the reality of cultural diversity.
– In dissociable from a democratic framework, cultural pluralism is conducive to cultural exchange and to the flourishing of creative capacities that sustain public life.
– Cultural diversity widens the range of options open to everyone; it is one of the roots of development, understood not simply in terms of economic growth, but also as a means to achieve a more satisfactory intellectual, emotional, moral and spiritual existence.
– Globalization, facilitated by the rapid development of new information and communication technologies, though representing a challenge for cultural diversity, creates the conditions for renewed dialogue among cultures and civilizations.
UNSECO and The Member States have committed themselves to taking appropriate steps to disseminate widely the “UNESCO Universal Declaration on Cultural Diversity”.
What can be done to Preserve the Culture:
Culture is at the heart of contemporary debates about identity, social cohesion, and the development of a knowledge-based economy, it can be preserved as follows:
1. Raising awareness modalities and patterns of cooperation, that are most conducive to the safeguarding and promotion of cultural diversity.
It also includes promoting through education an awareness of the positive value of cultural diversity and improving to this end both curriculum design and teacher education.
2. Involving the various sections of civil society closely in the framing of public policies aimed at safeguarding and promoting cultural diversity.
3. Recognizing and encouraging the contribution that the private sector can make to enhancing cultural diversity and facilitating, to that end, the establishment of forums for dialogue between the public sector and the private sector.
4. Protecting and extending Rights to culturally diverse as well as minority groups.
5. While ensuring the free flow of ideas by word and image, care should be exercised so that all cultures can express themselves and make themselves known.
6. Harnessing technology to spread awareness.
7. Strengthening capacities for creation and dissemination worldwide.
8. Fostering the exchange of knowledge and best practices using international platforms like UNESCO.