The Role of Bangladesh National Museum to Safeguard Intangible Cultural Heritage

Role of Bangladesh National Museum to Safeguard Intangible Cultural Heritage: A Reappraisal

Bangladesh National Museum


This paper aims to look into the function of Bangladesh National Museum to safeguard intangible cultural heritage which is considered as the fundamental of touchable civilization. Unfortunately, for the combative impact of modernisation, our intangible cultural heritages are under serious menace to its being which is really dismaying for us because if we fail to continue our intangible cultural heritage, we will lose our entity as a typical state in the map of the universe. National Museum as a innovator organisation of the authorities drama effectual function to safeguard intangible cultural heritage in many ways.

  1. Introduction:

The cultural heritage of Bangladesh is really rich and historically extremely regarded by the universe community as it has uniqueness and fortes which are really distinguishable in character. This heritage includes both touchable and intangible civilizations. From the crude age to the present twenty-four hours Bangladesh is an cultivable dirt of intangible cultural heritage like vocal, rites, tradition, dance, executing art, gay, games, culinary art, folk tales and architecture.etc and these intangible heritages have important influence on the manner of life of the people which makes Bangladeshi people distinct from other states. It should be mentioned that the touchable civilization of Bangladesh is really unambiguously alone like trade, different type of objects and all antiquities.

Bangladesh National Museum has started its journey in 1913 as Dhaka Museum. Dhaka Museum was located at Nimtoli Baro Duari country of Dhaka with two suites. Finally, Dhaka Museum transformed upgraded as Bangladesh National Museum in 1983 and shifted to show edifice at Shahbag. Bangladesh National Museum has a aggregation of near 86 1000 antiquities. As a wing of the Ministry of Cultural Affairs, People’s Republic of Bangladesh, Bangladesh Namtional Museum is playing vaital function to continue touchable and intangible heritage of the state and portraying rich, positive and bright image in forepart of the universe community. On August 7, 2013 Bangladesh National Museum celebrated its 100 old ages of constitution. In its long journey, it has taken many milepost enterprises to safeguard intangible cultural heritages.

1.1 Methodology

Both primary and secondary informations have been used to fix this paper. Primary informations were collected from the interview and treatment of the Bangladesh National Museum staffs. And secondary informations were collected from different books, diaries and articles.

  1. What is Intangible Cultural Heritage?

When sociologists talk about civilization, they are more interested about the characteristics of society which are learnt instead than inherited and these characteristics help members of the society to co-operate and communicate with each other which facilitate them to make common platform to last in a society. Culture consists of both intangible facets and touchable facets. Intangible facets include belief, thoughts, values and touchable facet includes the objects, symbols and engineerings which correspond to that facet ( Giddens, 2001 ) . Culture comes from the Latin word ‘colere’ means ‘to cultivate’ to ‘to till the soil’ . Smelse ( 1993 ) defined civilization as ‘a set of values, positions of world, and codifications of behaviour, held in common people who portion a typical manner of life’ . Schaefer ( 2006 ) identified civilization as ‘ entirety of learned, socially transmitted imposts, cognition, material objects, and behavior’ . Giddens ( 2001 ) has given a broader position about civilization.He says that civilization refers to the ways of life of the members of the society, or of groups within a society.

Wayss of life of the members of the society or group consist of touchable and intangible civilization. Intangible civilization can non be touched which is opposite to the touchable. Intangible civilization includes vocal, music, play, accomplishments, and others. Basic Texts of the 2003 convention for the safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage defined Intangible Cultural Heritage in page page-5 as

‘…………..the patterns, representations, looks, cognition, skills-as good as the instruments, objects, artefacts, and cultural infinites associated therewith-that communities, groups and, in some instances, persons recognize as portion of their cultural heritage. This intangible heritage, transmitted from coevals to coevals, is invariably related by communities and groups in response to their environment, their interaction with nature and history, and provides them with a sense of individuality and continuity, therefore advancing regard for cultural diverseness and human creativity……….’

‘…..the intangible Cultural Heritage, as defined above, is manifested inter alia the undermentioned spheres:

  1. Oral traditions and looks, including linguistic communication as a vehicle of the intangiable cultural heritage ;
  2. Performing humanistic disciplines ;
  3. Social patterns, rites and gay events ;
  4. Knowledge and patterns refering nature and the existence ;
  5. Traditional craftsmanship………..’
  1. Why should Intangible Culture be safeguarded?

Basic Texts of the 2003 convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage defined ‘Safeguarding’ in page page-6 as

‘……..‘Safeguarding’ means steps aimed at guaranting the viability of the intangible cultural heritage, including the designation, certification, research, saving, protection, publicity, sweetening, transmittal, peculiarly through formal and informal instruction, every bit good as the revival of the assorted facet of such heritage…………..’

It is so really of import to safeguard intangible cultural heritage like touchable cultural heritage. In fact, intangible cultural heritage is treated as the foundation of touchable cultural heritage. If we do non take appropriate step to safeguard intangible cultural heritage, it will be really hard for us to continue and care for our civilization. Westernisation, Americanization, Indianization, Urbanization, industrialisation and above all because of the impact of the globalisation our norms, values and rites are altering and many of our folkways, Morse and folk civilization are vanishing and some are losing peculiarity. Because of the information engineering and media, foreign civilization is going a portion of our civilization and act uponing our life in many ways.

To be as an cultural group and as a state it is truly indispensable to safeguard our intangible which is considered as the fabricating component of touchable civilization. To safeguard intangible cultural heritage public consciousness, corporate enterprises of local community and authorities organisation and appropriate Torahs are needed. Some specific stairss should be taken ; ; Identification of intangible cultural heritage, readying of stock list and debut of consciousness programme ( UNESCO, 2012 ) .

  1. Role of Bangladesh National Museum in Preserving Cultural Heritage

4.1 The Oral History of Bangladesh

Bangladesh is a land of poets, novelists, intellectuals, politicians, creative persons and journalist who vastly contributed and, in fact, are lending to the socio-cultural development of the state and without this part society can non be progressive or as a state we could non be able to place as an enlightened state. Henceforth, in 1985 Bangladesh national Museum has taken a landmark enterprise to interview high personalities of different Fieldss in audio format and US Ford Foundation was sort adequate to finance the undertaking sing the importance and demand which finally helped enrich the aggregation of Bangladesh National Museum and opened an chance for the new coevals to cognize about their distinguished predecessors and their positions and doctrine of life and the society as a whole. The undertaking rubric was ‘The Oral History of Bangladesh’ . Under this undertaking, Bangladesh National Museum was able to interview 100 eminent personalities including Abu Jafar Shamsuddin, Justice Abdus Sattar, journalist Md. Nasir Uddin, Poet Sufia Kamal, author Monsur Uddin, Mokhlesur Rahman ( shidhu mia ) , Basonti Guha Thakurota, Doc. Ahashanul Haque, with two different positions foremost, to continue the life of those individuals and secondly, to convey out socio-cultural, political and economic status of the state of that clip through their interviews. It was expected that this audio archive would able to work as a shop house of cognition for many research and mentions in future. Understanding the world and significance, Bangladesh National Museum has taken farther inaugural to print a book change overing the sounds named ‘A Hand Book of Oral History’ in English which is stored in the library of the museum and accessible for the people in big ( Bangladesh National Museum, 1992 ) . Keeping that success in head and recognizing the importance, national museum authorization has initiated 2nd stage of the undertaking from 2012 where another 100 individuals are enlisted to be interviewed and it would be recorded in picture format and a book will be published in due class. This undertaking is running successfully and ten interviews are already recoded. Professor Shordar Fajlul Karim, Mostofa Nurul Islam, Professor Shalauddin and Nurjahan Begum singular are among them.

4.2 Cultural Heritage of Districts

IMG-3Another noteworthy measure in regard of safeguarding intangible cultural heritage taken by Bangladesh national Museum was the devising of video docudrama of few territories which have historical heritage and are celebrated for rich civilization. The territories are Rajbari, Mymensingh, Panchagor, Dinajpur, Rajshahi, Thakurgaon, Naogaon, Cumilla, Chittagong, Kushtia, Bhola, Pirojpur, Coxes Bazar, Bandorbon, Netrokona, Tangail, Jinaidaha and Bhola. The enterprise was made in the twelvemonth 1993. Three different stairss were taken to finish the bundle. First, all the historical topographic points were recorded in picture format and narrative was added subsequently on, secondly, with the aid of the District Commissioner office a carnival was organized and recorded consequently to show the gay manner of Bangladeshi civilization and its interior artefacts andcommon people vocal, Ghetu gan, lati khela, palagan, putulnach,IMG-11snake-charmingwere included in the carnival every bit good, thirdly, interview of the local eminent individuals were recorded as witness statements to convey our the history, civilization and tradition more genuinely.

IMG-4IMG-6It should be mentioned here that many historical topographic points were comprehensively covered under this undertaking likepirojpur kumar parity, sundorbon, Monpura in Bhola territory ( Floating country ) , kantojirmondir in Dinajpur, Kusumba mosque in Naogaon, laloner mazar in Kustia, moynamoti in Comilla, paharpur Bihar in Rajshahiincludinglocal celebrated mosques and temples.

4.3 Gramophone Record of celebrated Singers

88-3550Bangladesh National Museum as a accelerator to continue national history and heritage owns 123 gramophone record of many celebrated vocalists of Bangladesh which is non merely important in the history of Bangladeshi music but besides mention beginning for future research. The records include the vocal of Abbasuddin, Kanon Devi, Komoldas Gupto, Shochin Dev Bormon, Baul Song etc.

4.4 Documentary on Liberation War

In the twelvemonth 1996 December, seven yearss long Reminiscence Programme on Liberation War was organized by Bangladesh National Museum. Seven different groups of people shared their memories of Liberation War and it was recorded in picture format and the groups were constituted with Civil Freedom Fighter, Politicians, Cultural Personalities, Journalists and Artists, Administrative Officer of the Mujib Nagar Government, representative of Military, Para- Military and Police, household members of the Intellectual Martyrs and members of the Shadin Bangla Beter Kandro. The picture docudrama is preserved in Bangladesh National Museum as one of the valued paperss of Liberation War with various information.

4.5 Documentary on Shitol Pati and Rickshaw Painting

Documentary on Shitol Pati and Rickshaw Painting was made in the twelvemonth 1999. A squad from Bangladesh National Museum went to Balagonj of Sylhet territory which is celebrated for Shitol Pati and made a docudrama on that. All the stairss of Shitol pati fiction was recorded, get downing from cane aggregation to weaving. National Museum functionaries besides went to Rayer Bazar of Dhaka which is a celebrated topographic point for Rickshaw Painting to enter the technique of Rickshaw Painting which is considered as colourful common people pigment.

4.6 Celebration of Bangla New Year

Bangladesh National Museum takes inaugural to observe Bangla New Year every twelvemonth and carnival and cultural programme performed by common people creative person are organized as portion of the jubilation. In New Year just different stables are positioned with Pittha, handcrafts, clayware, dolls, local place decor, local musical instruments and others. Performers and vocalists from all over the state are invited in the New Year cultural carnival. Concerned section of Bangladesh National Museum gives profound attempts to convey the creative persons from different parts of the state aiming those types of creative persons who have alone ability to execute common people vocal which are under serious menace of the influence of so called modern vocal. Our autochthonal vocals like Baul, Lalon, Vatiary, Jari, Sari and Pala are performed by the creative person which create the involvement among the witnesss and give them chance to repeat their love to the autochthonal vocal. This enterprise of Bangladesh National Museum should be considered as a perfect ingeniousness to convey and advance autochthonal vocal in a disruptive cultural ambiance.

4.7. Exhibition of Traditional common people trade:

Every twelvemonth Bangladesh National Museum arranges an exhibition on our traditional trade. Here they exhibit the procedure of trade, like jamdani weaving, Shitol pati weaving, clayware devising, tribal fabric weaving, Shola trades, metal trades etc. Every twelvemonth Bangladesh National Museum arranges this exhibition to promote the common people creative persons and besides speared out this knowledge our new coevals.

  1. Decision

From the above treatment it is clearly understood that a prima organisation of Bangladesh Government, National Museum is taking legion stairss to safeguard intangible cultural heritage through research, designation, certification, saving, protection, publicity, sweetening, transmittal, peculiarly through formal and informal attack, every bit good as the revival of the assorted facet of such heritage. For some quandaries like deficient budget, bureaucratism, preparation and other demands Museum is unable to widen the bound of its operation in respects to safeguard intangible cultural heritage. If these jobs are solved, and if, it can work to its coveted degree, in future, she could play a really effectual function to safeguard intangible cultural heritage which she is making with tonss of pride in the instance of touchable cultural heritage.


Bangladesh National Museum ( 19912 ) A Hand Book of Oral History. Dhaka: Director General, Bangladesh National Museum

Ginnens, Anthony ( 1997 )Sociology.Cambridge: Polity Press

Smelser, Neil J. ( 1993 )Sociology.New Delhi: Prentice Hall of India

Schaefer, Richard T. ( 2006 )Sociology.New York: McGraw Hill

UNESCO ( 2012 )Basic Texts of the 2003 Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage. France


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