Why UNESCO Recognizes Pencak Silat as Cultural Heritage



Markus Wisnu Murti

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  • Pencak silat. ANTARA

    Pencak silat. ANTARA

    TEMPO.CO, JakartaHilmar Farid, the Director-General of the Education and Culture Ministry’s Directorate of Culture, explained why UNESCO recognized pencak silat as an intangible cultural heritage of humanity. 

    According to Hilman, the government has already pitched silat to UNESCO since 2017.

    “Obviously because of pencak silat's contribution to humanity and human civilization. From there I guess it is pretty clear why pencak silat was recognized on the list of representatives,” he said at the ministry building on Friday, December 13. 

    He added the recognition was based on pencak silat's regeneration since the beginning of the seventh century.

    Besides pencak silat's historical depth, he said the recognition was also because it was supported and culturally practiced by society in general.

    “Society has been clung to the pencak silat tradition for at least 1,200-1,300 years," he said.