Why Cultural Heritage Matters Program And Resources

May 11, 2020
Why Cultural Heritage Matters Program and Resources

Watch the Program. Be Inspired.

Why is a Cultural Heritage Matters is a 30-minute program which highlights the reasons why preserving the knowledge of the past is important for the understanding of our future.

Father Columba Stewart, OSB, (HMML’s executive director) and Fred de Sam Lazaro (PBS NewsHour and the Under-told Stories Project) discuss the vital work of digitizing important historical manuscripts in partnership with communities around the world. During their conversation, Fr. Columba explains how and why HMML does its work, emphasizing the importance of preserving the world’s handwritten heritage for the purpose of fostering conversation and respectful debate among different cultures and religions. Finally, Fr. Columba passionately defends the importance of listening to each other in an otherwise divided and polarized world.

Watch to hear a message of hope during these uncertain times about how we can work together to preserve the stories of the past, so that we may better understand the present and help build a brighter future.

Why Cultural Heritage Matters is a co-production of the Hill Museum & Manuscript Library (HMML) and Twin Cities Public Television (TPT).

Inspire Others. Continue the Conversation.

Hold a virtual watch party! Invite your friends, family, book group, church community, neighbors, card group, or anyone else you can think of to view the program online. Have everyone watch the program independently or invite them to watch it “with” you at the same time from their own socially isolated locations. After the program, continue the conversation with a phone call, Zoom meeting, FaceTime or a good old fashioned over-the- backyard fence chat – just remember to keep the fence between you!

Check out the Why Cultural Heritage Matters Conversation Guide for topics and ideas to guide your discussion. You will find interesting and thought-provoking questions and quotes to spark your thinking or journaling. Encourage your conversation partners to share the program with others and hold their own watch parties. You will soon discover that the Coronavirus isn’t the only topic worth talking about!

Quick Inspiration.

If you do not have time to view the entire 30-minute program, check out these short clips for thought-provoking insights. Pair these clips with questions from the Why Cultural Heritage Matters Conversation Guide for rich discussions or writing in your classroom, group, or home settings.

Clip Title 1: HMML’s Mission: Learning from the Past

Video Length: 6:38 minutes

Short Description: Father Columba Stewart talks about HMML’s work in Timbuktu and contextualizes its importance with comments about intolerance and the necessity of learning how to disagree while still respecting and listening to the voices of the other.

Clip Title 2: Guardians of Culture

Video Length: 2:05 minutes

Short Description: Father Columba explains that preserving culture is not about leaving it untouched and protected from others; it is about making it live, breathe, and shared.

Clip Title 3: Digital World

Video Length: 2:57 minutes

Short Description: Persuading ancient communities to share their manuscripts digitally is not always an easy task, but Father Columba stresses that in a digital world, if you are not part of the digital conversation, you are not part of the conversation.

Clip Title 4: Intolerance

Video Length: 1:50 minutes

Short Description: The common enemy for all of us is that kind of intolerance that cannot bear the idea that there are significant voices and significant texts that are different from their own.

Clip Title 5: Listening to the Past and Others

Video Length: 2:26 minutes

Short Description: Short Description: There was a time when everyone trusted Walter Cronkite, but in today’s polarized world we must learn the lessons of the past and figure out how listen respectfully, disagree vehemently with ground rules, while still respecting the voice of the other.

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