Preserving Ethnic Culture in Gia Lai

2:46:28 PM | 16/1/2006

Gia Lai province is located in the north central highlands with a long history of foundation and development and diverse ethnicity and cultures. In the past few years, Gia Lai has focused on preserving and developing traditional cultural features and their value, in particular the Central Highland gongs.
To preserve and develop intangible cultural heritage, the Gia Lai Museum has collected thousands of historic items, including archaeology, ethnology and local history. Hundreds of heritage items, which have historic, cultural and scientific values, have been displayed to serve the people in the province and visitors from other provinces. They include stone tools, pottery, and jewellery gongs, bronze drums created by ancient people, heritage items related to the Champa dynasty and Tay Son farmers in Thuong Dao region, and pictures and historic items of Gia Lai people in the battle to gain independence and freedom.
The culture sector in Gia Lai has also conducted research in order to find and make profiles of cultural-historic sites for protection. To date, Gia Lai has discovered nearly 40 archaeological sites, of which the Gia Lai Culture and Information Department has coordinated with the Archaeological Institute, under the National Science, Society and Humanism Centre, to excavate five sites, uncovering a large amount of historic items, providing t scientific evidence to help experts study the pre-history of Gia Lai province.
Historic and cultural heritage items and landscapes are also strong points of the province in its economic development. Many of the historic sites have attracted visitors, such as Bien Ho tourist site and Tay Son Thuong Dao site.
Gia Lai has invested in studying and collecting this intangible cultural heritage of native people in the province. It has published the Jrai-Vietnamese, Bahnar-Vietnamese dictionaries. The Gia Lai Culture and Information Department has also introduced the Jrai-Bahnar designs, Gia Lai folk literature, such as three Bahnar historic poets, one poetry story and two books of folk songs.
Folk dancing of Jrai and Bahnar ethnic peoples also contributes to the diverse arts of the province.
Customs, habits, ways of life, and handicrafts of the native people in Gia Lai have drawn the attention of scientists. Many researches have been highly appraised, such as the grave and statue of the north Central Highlands by Ngo Van Doanh and Rong House by Nguyen Khac Tung.
For many years, Gia Lai has held annual folk culture and gongs festivals. In 2005, Gia Lai successfully organized the Gong Festival to celebrate the Gong cultural event in which UNESCO recognized the gong as a masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity.
Ngoc Binh

Other News