In November 2005, the ” Gangneung Danoje Festival in Jiangling”, which was declared by South Korea, was officially designated as “the legend of mankind and the intangible heritage” by UNESCO on the Nov 24th of Paris time. Jianglin Gangneung Danoje Festival and Chinese Dragon Boat Festival are similar in origin,so some Chinese media expressed strong dissatisfaction about the success of Korea’s application. What is the difference between the Gangneung Danoje Festival and the Dragon Boat Festival? Did the Gangneung Danoje Festival in Korea really copy the Dragon Boat Festival in China?

The Dragon Boat Festival in South Korea is composed of dance, shaman sacrifice, folk art exhibition and so on. It is different from the Dragon Boat Festival in China, people eat zongzi, racing dragon boat to commemorate Qu Yuan in Dragon Boat Festival. The only same point of these two festivals is the time frame, which is held during the Dragon Boat Festival in China.

China’s “Dragon Boat Festival” is not in contradiction with South Korea. From the successful application of Korea to the Dragon Boat Festival, we can see that Korea has injected modern cultural elements into traditional cultural activities, successfully realized the modern transformation and gained international recognition, which is a reference for the protection of Chinese cultural heritage.

The Dragon Boat Festival, the 5th day of the fifth month of the Chinese lunar calendar year, also called duanyangjie, bath Festival etc.. It is a traditional culture festival popular in China as well as in the cultural circles of Chinese characters. The Dragon Boat Festival originated in Chinese, initially for illnesses and epidemic prevention before the Spring Festival. In Dragon Boat Festival, local people eat dumplings, drink realgar. Influenced by the Chinese culture, this festival was also being used for reference by other around countries. The Dragon Boat Festival has been listed as a national holiday since 2008. In May 2006, the State Council included it in the first batch of national intangible cultural heritage list in China. In September 2009, UNESCO formally approved the Chinese Dragon Boat Festival as the world’s intangible cultural heritage. It became the first Chinese festival to be selected as the world’s intangible heritage. On September 30, 2009, China’s Dragon Boat Festival was selected to be selected by UNESCO as the representative of the human intangible cultural heritage.

To sum up, although the Gangneung Danoje festivals in Korea have the same origin as Chinese Dragon Boat festivals, the two countries are quite different in celebrating festivals’ contents and meanings. Basically, South Korea has created a completely different and historic Festival.


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