The Asia-Pacific region is home to rich and diverse documentary heritage reflecting the cultures, histories, traditions and values of its nations. Taking various forms – from manuscripts and woodblocks to photographs, stone inscriptions, sound recordings and film – this heritage is crucial to understanding the past and the present of our societies. It is also a source of inspiration, creativity and learning for future generations.
Diverse heritage brings nations together and contributes to a culture of peace. That is most clearly seen in the joint nomination process, whereby countries recognize common heritage that transcends national borders. One example is the Kulliyyāt-i Sa’di, the compendium of works by the 13th-century poet and writer Abu Muhammad Muslih al-Din bin Abdallah Shirazi, known by the penname Sa’di, which is currently held at the National Library of Iran and inscribed on the Memory of the World Register. Given the shared heritage of the Persian-speaking communities in West Asia, the Kulliyyāt manuscript is now being considered for joint inscription with Afghanistan, with one version of the manuscript held in its National Archives.