Sarp. No more secrets about the brandon for Mireia

Sarp. No more secrets about the brandon for Mireia
Sarp. No more secrets about the brandon for Mireia

It all started in 2019, Mireia is interested in the ancestrality of the brandon. She explains how this very local festival becomes intangible heritage of all humanity. She develops the inventory, the candidacy and tries to understand local heritage after registration with UNESCO.

The aim of this thesis is to critically analyse this heritage throughout the Pyrenees, then focus on the Barousse. Originally, the municipalities were Christianised over time. Concerning the application, it was necessary to look at the materials used and to find the memory of the village elders. This results in 3 types of summer solstice festivals, that of Catalonia, Aragon where people go up the mountain with torches and go down to the village and celebrate around the fire. In Andorra the celebration is done with a spinning dance with the “falles” in hand. In the central Pyrenees the festival is celebrated with the brandon.

The other important element: the context of UNESCO. How to understand the institutional and international normality of the context of regimes? How do we go down from the state to the region to arrive in the valley? Mireia therefore did technical research by participating in the preparation of the solstice. She worked on the history and the concept of heritage. She went back to the French Revolution, then looked at the Second World War. A period that allowed the conservation of heritage. Apart from UNESCO world heritage, there is heritage in the small valleys that tells the story, it is the local identity. Formerly called “folklore” it was not part of the dominant class. May 68 also had consequences on the return to the countryside with an interesting regional identity.

The application: how to pass on this intangible heritage, protect it and safeguard it? A colossal work initiated by René Marrot, an adventure that began in 2007 until 2015, the date of registration. In Barousse, it was necessary to recover the entire history of the festival, to trace a genealogy in this valley.

In this valley there are 20 active villages and 5 dormant ones but what is interesting is the temporality of the festival in relation to Catalonia. The local perception of discontinuity has particularly interested Mireia, the importance in traditions when there is a discontinuity in its history.

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