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Culture

Community

Community

Communities, as defined in the UNESCO Convention of the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity in 2003, and the relative operational guidelines, are collectively the communities, groups, and where appropriate individuals, that are actively involved in the management, creation, maintenance, and transmission of the cultural heritage.

Emblematic Communities

Emblematic Communities

“Emblematic communities” are social groups locally defined as representatives of universal values declared by the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity, in particular responsible for the safeguarding and promotion of the element.

Due to historical, scientific or qualitative reasons, these communities employ a particular significance together with the national communities of the seven nominated States (Italy, Spain, Greece, Morocco, Portugal, Croatia and Cyprus), and establish a substantial part of their identity and continuity through the Mediterranean diet, intended as a lifestyle (from Greek diaita).

Conviviality

Conviviality

Conviviality, the pleasure of spending time with others, is one of the fundamental elements of the Mediterranean diet, so much so that it was put at the base of the “new food pyramid” proposed by INRAN (Istituto Nazionale per la Ricerca degli Alimenti e della Nutrizione).

Meals have become a significant ritual and taken on a symbolic value amongst people of the Mediterranean. Thanks to the concept of eating together, in addition to nourishment, the cultural foundations of interpersonal relationships are reinforced, guaranteeing identity, and social and cultural continuity, both for the individuals that make up communities, and the communities as a whole.

Kitchen

Kitchen

Cooking or cuisine has a precise meaning within social norms.  

Mediterranean cuisine represents the fundamental place where gestures, uses and customs that belong to tradition are recovered, without giving up on experimenting with creativity. Both an application and an artistic re-elaboration of tradition are carried out between the stoves: thanks to the culture of the Mediterranean Diet, the kitchen is the place where raw materials enter and complex dishes come out, which are much more than the simple sum of the individual components. Another essential element in the kitchen is intergenerational dialogue, ...

Mediterranean Diet

Mediterranean Diet

The "Mediterranean Diet" is a social practice based on a set of skills, knowledge and traditions that range from landscape to table and which concern, in the Mediterranean basin, cultures, crops, harvesting, fishing, conservation, processing, preparation, cooking and above all the methods of consuming the meal. This body of knowledge is associated with the rhythm of a seasonal calendar characterized by nature and related religious or ritual meanings. The Mediterranean Diet as a lifestyle, ...

Social Function

Social Function

Beyond the mere nutritional aspect, a meal is a strong social factor in itself.

Dating back to the history of Mediterranean populations, sitting together around a table has always represented, and continues to represent a moment of assertion and restoration in the family and the community, of the respective history, setting, symbols, values and beliefs. Traditions and expressions are transmitted orally from one generation to the next during a banquet, in which the social function consists of continuously reinvigorating relationships between people that possess knowledge and those that learn it.

Mediterranean

Mediterranean

Ever since ancient times the Mediterranean Sea has been the birthplace and home to civilization and cultures, which have prospered on its shores.

From the Phoenicians up until the Ancient Greeks, from the Roman Empire to nowadays, the communities of the Mare Nostrum have developed practices, knowledge, skills, identity and communal traditions in the world of craftsmanship, fishing and agriculture. Dating back to ancient times, cereals, olive trees, grapevines, fruit and vegetables have been cultivated on the Mediterranean land, cultivation and activities that shape the territory, conserving and safeguarding it in its biological and cultural diversity. The Mediterranean people have always acquired the food for their tables from these products, that not only represent a source of sustenance but also a priceless cultural heritage of the transmission of know-how, values and traditions.

Mercato

Mercato

Historically, markets (emporio, agora, forum, bazaar, souk) are the place in which the life of Mediterranean communities unfolded.

Often situated in the main square, the market was the place where one bought food, but also where people spoke about foods and recipes, discussed politics, religion and current affairs. It was, in short, the cornerstone of social and cultural relations. Even today, markets are a custom, a way of finding harmony with nature, with its life cycle and seasonality, thanks to the local produce that fill the market stalls. Furthermore, the underlying foundation of market life is a daily participation, where a personal relationship of trust is established between buyers and sellers. All within the framework of a strong symbolic role and ancient tradition that has led to the present day examples of architecture and aesthetic compositions, no lesser than works of art.

Intangible Cultural Heritage

Intangible Cultural Heritage

“Intangible Cultural Heritage” refers to the customs, representations, expressions, awareness, and know-how that communities, groups and in some cases individuals recognize as their cultural heritage.

This intangible cultural heritage, transmitted from generation to generation, is constantly recreated by communities and groups in response to their environment, their interaction with nature and their history, which gives them a sense of identity and continuity, thus promoting respect for cultural diversity and human creativity. The “Intangible Cultural Heritage” appears in traditions and oral expressions, including language; in the performing arts; in social customs, ceremonial events and festivals, in ideas and practices in relation to nature and the universe; in traditional craftsmanship.

The "intangible cultural heritage" is manifested, among other, oral traditions and expressions, including language as a vehicle of the heritage ...

festivals

festivals

Moments of great conviviality, expressions of the close bond between man and nature, events of "rich and constructive sociality" and "experiences of common life" that unite different cultures, facilitate social peace, the rediscovery of common roots, the enhancement of ancient traditions of the peoples of the Mediterranean. The festivals, as well as the Spanish romerías, the Greek panigirias and the Moroccan mussems, represent a fundamental component of the culture of the Mediterranean Diet. During these popular festivals, generally linked to ...

Safeguard

Safeguard

The term “Safeguard” refers to the measures toward guaranteeing the vitality of the intangible cultural heritage, including identification, documentation, research, preservation, protection, promotion, recognition, transmission, particularly through formal and informal education, as well as by reintroducing various aspects of such a cultural heritage.

Transmission

Transmission

One of the founding elements of the Mediterranean diet is its transmission from generation to generation.

Ever since antiquity the techniques of cultivating produce from the land and the art of preparing recipes, have been handed down orally, together with a heritage of rich social and cultural values. Skills, techniques, gestures, expressions, uses and traditions are transmitted every day from the elderly to the new generations, both during the activities of cultivation, fishing and craftsmanship, as at the moment of sharing the ritual meal, symbolic of the Mediterranean diet.

Cultural Value

Cultural Value

On November 16, 2010, the Mediterranean diet was declared an Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.

In addition to possessing beneficial nutritional elements for the human body, and therefore being considered for its dietary aspect, UNESCO also recognized the Mediterranean diet as a cultural element, a set of social, traditional and agricultural practices, as a lifestyle. The Mediterranean diet favors the intergenerational transmission of know-how and skills related to wine and food and more, and promotes intercultural dialogue between populations of the Mare Nostrum, all the while reinforcing their identity.

mipaaf createsMeddiet - The portal of the Mediterranean Diet "is a project of the University of Rome Unitelma Sapienza, made with cAttribute of the Ministry of Agricultural, Food and Forestry Policies - Ministerial Decree no. 93824 of 30 December 2014 and updated in 2018 in collaboration with CREA - Research Center for Food and Nutrition.

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