Cultural artifacts from the Western world have been the subject of a “cultural lag” as the European colonizers have increasingly lost their grip on their respective cultures.
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has said that “cultural heritage” means the collection and preservation of cultural knowledge and values, as well as the preservation of “the unique cultures of peoples.”
The organization has designated many Western cultural assets, including art, music, literature, film, art and photography, as “cultural” in its 2018 “National Register of Historic Places.”
The designation of cultural assets was first made in 1947 by the United Nations General Assembly, which said in its 1956 Universal Declaration of Human Rights: “All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights.
They are endowed with certain unalienable rights; among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”
In a 2016 report, UNESCO found that “almost all of the world’s cultures, regions and communities are under threat of extinction, with many facing imminent extinction.”
The organization’s latest report, released in 2018, also highlighted the “cultural gap” between the United States and the rest of the Western World, and noted that the United Kingdom’s “cultural identity” is threatened.