2009 World Cultural Diversity Festival

2009 World Cultural Diversity Festival
  • Shaolin Monk ©Unesco

A major challenge of the Twenty-First Century is to make diversity out of difference, that is to say, to promote unity by cultivating – and not by reducing – human complexity.

Up until now, the forces of unity have tended to subject our planet to a simplified order, be it for ideological, imperialistic or economic purposes. Each of these efforts has missed the target and left bitter traces. It is now time to build kinship on the basis of plurality, starting with the rich diversity of humankind.

Culture is essential to this endeavor, as witnessed by the scope of world heritage sites and artworks and by the originality of creations which keep uniformity at bay.

Culture is at the heart of the Diversity Festival organized by UNESCO in many regions of the world, from 11 to 22 May 2009, to celebrate World Day for Cultural Diversity, for Dialogue and Development.

The Festival practices what it preaches, since it is made up of extremely diverse events, held in a multiplicity of places and countries from Paris to São Paulo. Far from proposing a preconceived vision, it calls on each and everyone to freely express a living.