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Dec 14, 2011

Day of Prayer for Prey Lang Forest Announced


The Prey Lang forest in Cambodia is the last large primary forest of its kind on the Indochina peninsula.  It is home to seven distinct ecosystems and many sacred sites.  The forest is surrounded by 339 villages made up mostly of indigenous Kuy people whose lives are physically and spiritually connected to it.  But the forest is being threatened by development.  In response to these threats, the Prey Lang Community Network has announced a day of prayer for Prey Lang, appropriately named “Pray Long for Prey Lang”.  You need not be a spiritual person to appreciate the value of this unique resource.  And you need not stand in prayer to show your support of the cause.  Both the Prey Lang Community Network and non-profit Cultural Survival offer other ways to help.

Read more about Prey Lang and the Community Network here and check out Cultural Survival’s Global Response campaign to help save Prey Lang forest here:

Nov 30, 2011

Check out these cultural sustainability initiatives in Indonesia!


I am traveling in Indonesia this week and have been happy to find issues of cultural sustainability making front page news in the Jakarta Post.  In a country where indigenous people are the majority, perhaps I shouldn’t be surprised.  But in a world where bad, bloody, and/or scandalous news often fills the front page, the following articles were a pleasant surprise.

On Monday, an article about the export potential of traditional foods appeared.  The government has recognized that the promotion of traditional foods has the potential to boost the economy and create jobs while fostering a sense of cultural and national identity.  Sounds like a great plan to me!

Today, the headline “Strictly Javanese at language congress” caught my eye.  I assumed the article would be about disallowing dialects at the congress, effectively alienating those who speak indigenous languages.  Instead, the article proved to be a celebration of language, stating that Javanese has been named the official language of the congress.  The Surinamese Social Affairs Minister was quoted as expressing his appreciation of the declaration, saying, “We are happy that [we] can speak Javanese.  It’s because we are preserving [the culture] of the 100,000 Javanese people of Suriname.”  Another speaker at the congress echoed this sentiment, stating, “I am touched that I see a spirit to preserve Javanese here. I see this as a shared consciousness to block the impact of globalization that has caused many regional languages to become extinct.”

Language preservation and culinary cultural promotion in action in Indonesia!

Nov 17, 2011

MACS student Cherie Cloudt in the news


Cherie Cloudt’s heartfelt work with her community has attracted media attention in New Mexico.  You can check out the Ruidoso News article and learn more about Cherie, her community, and her ponies.  Great work, Cherie!

Have you seen other MACS students in the news?  Do tell!  Send stories and links to or post them in the comments below.

Nov 2, 2011

November is Native American Heritage Month!


November is Native American Heritage Month.  How are you celebrating?

If you need some inspiration, you can check out the Native American Heritage Month website created and supported by The Library of Congress, National Endowment for the Humanities, National Gallery of Art, National Park Service, Smithsonian Institution, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, and the U.S. National Archives and Records Administration.

A few ideas to get you started:

Plan a trip using the National Parks Service Travel Itineraries and visit an historic and culturally important site, such as the Indian Mounds of Mississippi.

Listen to Plains Indian Stories with storyteller Donna Couteau (Sac & Fox) every Thursday through December 16th, 2011 (10AM – 1PM, 2PM – 4PM at the at the American Indian Museum Heye Center, New York).

Catch one of the daily (12:30 & 3:30, except Wednesday) screenings of Silent Thunder – the story of Stanford Addison, an Arapaho elder, who has become a master “horse whisperer” – at the National Museum of the American Indian.

Plan a viewing of the documentary We Still Live Here – Âs Nutayuneân at your school, home, or community center, attend one of the public screenings in locations across the country, or watch the film on PBS Independent Lens on November 17, 2011 and share in the celebration of the inspirational story of the Wompanoag people, Jessie Little Doe, and their quest to revitalize their Native language.

If you aren’t able to get out and enjoy the events this month, there are some incredible teaching resources and online exhibits available for exploration, such as the Coso Rock Art exhibit.

Support a Native American Heritage project.  Speak in your Native tongue.  Share a Native tradition or meal.  CELEBRATE!

If you are hosting or attending an events and want to share the info, please post in the comment section here or email the event information to Sunny at

Oct 31, 2011

Sustainability as a competitive advantage


“McCabe sees sustainability as a competitive advantage for Maori, particularly in the global market, because it fits with many cultural norms that Maori already have and they are less likely to pay it lip service.”

Check out this article that discusses sustainability as both a way of life to Maori people and an advantage to Maori businesses: Maori business enterprises in unique position

Oct 24, 2011

365 Ways to Sustain Culture


MACS student, Queen Nur, has a goal of compiling/posting a list of “365 Ways to Sustain Culture”.  You can join the discussion, add your idea, and help a fellow MACSer by posting a comment on her blog, emailing her at, or posting to her Facebook page.

In our every day lives and in the work we do, we aim to find ways to sustain the culture and traditions that matter to us and our communities.  Let’s share our ideas with each other and help Queen Nur reach her goal!

Oct 24, 2011

Call for Submissions!


This is the last week to make your submissions for the upcoming issue of Terralingua’s newsletter, Langscape.  Through Monday, October 31, 2011, Terralingua is accepting submissions related to the theme “Indigenous Oral Traditions”.  You may send your articles, photographs, stories, and news to for consideration.  This is an excellent opportunity to get involved, support the work of Terralingua, and have your voice heard!
Terralingua is an international NGO that aims to educate and connect people around issues of biocultural diversity.  To learn more about Terralingua, visit their website,

Oct 3, 2011

Sustainable Tourism in Bhutan


“The balancing act that the idea of Sustainable Tourism proposes is not an easy task, as the intention is to provide a genuine and always outstanding experience for the visitors at the same time as keeping a sense of ownership, self-determination and an improved quality of life for the local people.”

Check out this article about how Bhutan is dealing with the “balancing act” of sustainable tourism and the intersection with culture, policy, dollars (or rather ngultrum) and development.

Sep 8, 2011

Open House!


Culture doesn’t always fit inside a glass case.

Goucher’s limited-residency master’s program in cultural sustainability empowers today’s activists with real-world tactics for preserving and enriching the identity of communities at risk.

We invite you to learn more about our groundbreaking degree program by attending an upcoming information session or joining a conference call.

Information Session
Saturday, September 17, 2011
2 – 4:30 p.m.
Roenberg Gallery
Goucher College
1021 Dulaney Valley Rd
Baltimore, MD 21204

Click here for directions to Goucher.
Click here for a campus map.

RSVP now to or 800-697-4646

If you can’t attend the information session, consider joining our upcoming conference call.

Conference Call
Tuesday, October 4th
7:00 p.m. (EST)

Once you RSVP for the conference calls, you will be sent a conference call code.

Sep 5, 2011

Ruth Little on stewardship, connections and ecology


Really quite a brilliant and inspiring talk:

“Stewardship, for me, speaks for re-connection. Cultural practices – what Clifford Geertz has called the webs of significance which man has spun and in which he is himself suspended – are forms of sustenance that can restore a sense of integration of the self with natural systems, because their mode is connective, collaborative and associative.”


About this blog

Goucher's MA in Cultural Sustainability provides students with the training to identify, protect, enhance and work effectively with communities around what makes them unique: their traditions, ways of life, cherished spaces, and vital relationships to each other and the world. Read More

Learn more about our program

Goucher's Master of Arts in Cultural Sustainability is a completely unique new program. We teach our students how to work closely with individuals and communities to identify, protect, and enhance their important traditions, their ways of life, their cherished spaces, and their vital relationships to each other and the world.

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