Traditional Culture, Globalization and Local Practices

Principal researcher: Zorica Vitez
Researchers and associates: Iris Biškupić Bašić, Marina Blagaić, Silvio Braica, Naila Ceribašić, Sanja Kalapoš Gašparac, Aleksandra Muraj, Lidija Nikočević

Permanent presence of traditional culture, as one component of national culture and its regional and local variants, contributes to the complex picture of contemporary Croatian culture (high, popular, media, etc.). Traditional culture is also expressed through various forms, is subject to changes yet remains firm basis of identity.

Project is conceived as ethnological research of the role of traditional culture nowadays and its role in processes of identification and globalization. Examined for this purpose will be: 1. position of traditional culture between global ideas and local practices on the example of UNESCO’s actions for protection of cultural heritage, particularly ethnographic and intangible; 2. presence of traditional culture on contemporary cultural scene and in media, as well as in so-called cultural amateurism; 3. potentials of using traditional culture in development of (cultural) tourism (on the example of the island of Šolta). These three project segments are closely related, because they deal with (1) identification and protection of traditional culture, (2) its presentation and (3) application, namely the conceptualization of tourist offer based on specific contents from the domain of traditional culture. Each segment will incorporate theoretical and empirical ethnological researches of relevant narrower topics, interpretation of new material and reinterpretation of ethnographic texts.

The aim of the research is to indicate contributions of the traditional culture to the contemporary culture, modern society and economy (tourism), and to support wider affirmation of the traditional culture in the circumstances of transition and globalization. We presume that the research will show correspondence between problems, as well as results in each of the segments and particular topics, and so confirm the hypothesis of possible participation of traditional culture in culture of modern society, quite probably with certain adaptations, modernizations and changes of functions and contexts. Verification of the results is expected in the form of the realization of presumed correspondence between topics, and in comparison with other similar researches in Croatia and abroad. This research will contribute to the knowledge on traditional culture as a part of Croatian cultural heritage in its entirety, but also as a part of contemporary Croatian culture. Therefore it is important for development of national sciences, as well as for international recognition of scientific relevance of Croatian ethnology.