Working Through Colonial Collections

Working Through Colonial Collections

Author: Margareta von Oswald

Publisher: Leuven University Press

ISBN: 9789462703100

Category: Social Science

Page: 322

View: 775

Reckoning with colonial legacies in Western museum collections What are the possibilities and limits of engaging with colonialism in ethnological museums? This book addresses this question from within the Africa department of the Ethnological Museum in Berlin. It captures the Museum at a moment of substantial transformation, as it prepared the move of its exhibition to the Humboldt Forum, a newly built and contested cultural centre on Berlin’s Museum Island. The book discusses almost a decade of debate in which German colonialism was negotiated, and further recognised, through conflicts over colonial museum collections. Based on two years of ethnographic fieldwork examining the Museum’s various work practices, this book highlights the Museum’s embeddedness in colonial logics and shows how these unfold in the Museum’s everyday activity. It addresses the diverse areas of expertise in the Ethnological Museum – the preservation, storage, curation, and research of collections – and also draws on archival research and oral history interviews with current and former employees. Working through Colonial Collections unravels the ongoing and laborious processes of reckoning with colonialism in the Ethnological Museum’s present – processes from which other ethnological museums, as well as Western museums more generally, can learn.

Uncertain Images: Museums and the Work of Photographs

Uncertain Images: Museums and the Work of Photographs

Author: Dr Sigrid Lien

Publisher: Ashgate Publishing, Ltd.

ISBN: 9781409464914

Category: Art

Page: 289

View: 693

Almost all museums hold photographs in their collections, and museum professionals and their audiences engage with photographs in a myriad of ways. Yet despite some three decades of critical museology and photographic theory, and an extensive debate on the politics of representation, outside art museums, almost no critical attention has been given specifically to the roles, purposes and lives of these photographs within museums. This book brings into focus the ubiquitous yet entirely unconsidered work that photographs are put to in museums. The authors' argument is that there is an economy of photographs in museums which is integral to the processes of the museum, and integral to the understanding of museums. The international contributors, drawn from curators and academics, reflect a range of visual and museological expertise. After an introduction setting out the range of questions and problems, the first part addresses broad curatorial strategies and ways of thinking about photographs in museums. Shifting the emphasis from curatorial practices and anxieties to the space of the gallery, this is followed by a series of case studies of exhibitionary practices and the museum strategies that support them. The third section focuses on the role of photographs in the museum articulation of ‘difficult histories’. A final section addresses photograph collections in a digital environment. New technologies and new media have transformed the management, address and purposing in photographs in museums, from cataloguing practices to streaming on social media. These growing practices challenge both traditional hierarchies of knowledge in museums and the location of authority about photographs. The volume emerges from PhotoCLEC, a HERA funded project on museums and the photographic legacy of the colonial past in a postcolonial and multicultural Europe.

Absent Presences in the Colonial Archive

Absent Presences in the Colonial Archive

Author: Irene Hilden

Publisher: Leuven University Press

ISBN: 9789462703407

Category: Political Science

Page: 302

View: 236

The Berlin Sound Archive (Lautarchiv) consists of an extensive collection of sound recordings, compiled for scientific purposes in the first half of the 20th century. Recorded on shellac are stories and songs, personal testimonies and poems, glossaries and numbers. This book engages with the archive by consistently focusing on recordings produced under colonial conditions. With a firm commitment to postcolonial scholarship, Absent Presences in the Colonial Archive is a historical ethnography of a metropolitan institution that participated in the production and preservation of colonial structures of power and knowledge. The book examines sound objects and listening practices that render the coloniality of knowledge fragile and inconsistent, revealing the absent presences of colonial subjects who are given little or no place in established national narratives and collective memories.

Creating African Fashion Histories

Creating African Fashion Histories

Author: JoAnn McGregor

Publisher: Indiana University Press

ISBN: 9780253060136

Category: Art

Page: 360

View: 580

Creating African Fashion Histories examines the stark disjuncture between African self-fashioning and museum practices. Conventionally, African clothing, textiles, and body adornments were classified by museums as examples of trade goods, art, and ethnographic materials—never as "fashion." Counterposing the dynamism of African fashion with museums' historic holdings thus provides a unique way of confronting ways in which coloniality persists in knowledge and institutions today. This volume brings together an interdisciplinary group of scholars and curators to debate sources and approaches for constructing African fashion histories and to examine their potential for decolonizing museums, fashion studies, and global cultural history. The editors of this volume seek to answer questions such as: How can researchers use museum collections to reveal traces of past self-fashioning that are obscured by racialized forms of knowledge and institutional practice? How can archival, visual, oral, ethnographic, and online sources be deployed to capture the diversity of African sartorial pasts? How can scholars and curators decolonize the Eurocentric frames of thinking encapsulated in historic collections and current curricula? Can new collections of African fashion decolonize museum practice? From Moroccan fashion bloggers to upmarket Lagos designers, the voices in this ground-breaking collection reveal fascinating histories and geographies of circulation within and beyond the continent and its diasporic communities.

Decolonizing Colonial Heritage

Decolonizing Colonial Heritage

Author: Britta Timm Knudsen

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 9781000473605

Category: Art

Page: 470

View: 769

Decolonizing Colonial Heritage explores how different agents practice the decolonization of European colonial heritage at European and extra-European locations. Assessing the impact of these practices, the book also explores what a new vision of Europe in the postcolonial present could look like. Including contributions from academics, artists and heritage practitioners, the volume explores decolonial heritage practices in politics, contemporary history, diplomacy, museum practice, the visual arts and self-generated memorial expressions in public spaces. The comparative focus of the chapters includes examples of internal colonization in Europe and extends to former European colonies, among them Shanghai, Cape Town, and Rio de Janeiro. Examining practices in a range of different contexts, the book pays particular attention to sub-national actors whose work is opening up new futures through their engagement with decolonial heritage practices in the present. The volume also considers the challenges posed by applying decolonial thinking to existing understandings of colonial heritage. Decolonizing Colonial Heritage examines the role of colonial heritage in European memory politics and heritage diplomacy. It will be of interest to academics and students working in the fields of heritage and memory studies, colonial and imperial history, European studies, sociology, cultural studies, development studies, museum studies, and contemporary art.

The Post/Colonial Museum

The Post/Colonial Museum

Author: Anna Brus

Publisher: transcript Verlag

ISBN: 9783839453971

Category: Social Science

Page: 265

View: 651

The African museum landscape is changing. A new generation of scholars and curators is setting international standards for the reappraisal and revision of colonial collections, the conception of curatorial spaces, and the integration of new groups of actors. In the face of the ghostly survival of colonial epistemologies in archives, displays, and architectures, it is a matter of breaking up institutional encrustations and infrastructures, inventing new museum practices, and bringing archives to life. Scholars and museum experts predominantly working in Africa and South America discuss the post/colonial history of museums, their political-economic entanglements, the significance of diasporic objects, as well as the prospects for restitution and its consequences. The contributions to this issue of ZfK are all presented in English. Based on the works of Waverly Duck and Anne Rawls, the debate section is devoted to forms of everyday racism and the way interaction orders of race are institutionalized.

Routledge Handbook of the Archaeology of Indigenous-Colonial Interaction in the Americas

Routledge Handbook of the Archaeology of Indigenous-Colonial Interaction in the Americas

Author: Lee M. Panich

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 9781000403619

Category: Social Science

Page: 578

View: 695

The Routledge Handbook of the Archaeology of Indigenous-Colonial Interaction in the Americas brings together scholars from across the hemisphere to examine how archaeology can highlight the myriad ways that Indigenous people have negotiated colonial systems from the fifteenth century through to today. The contributions offer a comprehensive look at where the archaeology of colonialism has been and where it is heading. Geographically diverse case studies highlight longstanding theoretical and methodological issues as well as emerging topics in the field. The organization of chapters by key issues and topics, rather than by geography, fosters exploration of the commonalities and contrasts between historical contingencies and scholarly interpretations. Throughout the volume, Indigenous and non-Indigenous contributors grapple with the continued colonial nature of archaeology and highlight Native perspectives on the potential of using archaeology to remember and tell colonial histories. This volume is the ideal starting point for students interested in how archaeology can illuminate Indigenous agency in colonial settings. Professionals, including academic and cultural resource management archaeologists, will find it a convenient reference for a range of topics related to the archaeology of colonialism in the Americas.

Collecting Colonialism

Collecting Colonialism

Author: Chris Gosden

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 9781000183948

Category: Social Science

Page: 256

View: 847

Colonialism has shaped the world we live in today and has often been studied at a global level, but there is less understanding of how colonial relations operated locally. This book takes twentieth-century Papua New Guinea as its focus, and charts the changes in colonial relationships as they were expressed through the flow of material culture. Exploring the links between colonialism and material culture in general, the authors focus on the particular insights that museum collections can provide into social relations. Collections made by anthropologists in New Britain in the first half of the century are compared with recent fieldwork in the area to provide a particularly in-depth picture of historical change. Museum collections can reveal how people dealt with changes in the nature of community, gender relations and notions of power through the shifting use of objects in ritual and exchange. Objects, photographs and archives bring to life both the individual characters of colonial New Britain and the longer-term patterns of history. Drawing on the related disciplines of archaeology, linguistics, history and anthropology, the authors provide fresh insights into the complexities of colonial life. In particular, they show how social relationships among Melanesians, whites and other communities helped to erode distinctions between colonizers and locals, distinctions that have been maintained by scholars of colonialism in the past. This book successfully combines a specific geographical focus with an interest in the broader questions that surround colonial relations, historical change and the history of anthropology.

Collections Vol 11 N3

Collections Vol 11 N3

Author: Collections

Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield

ISBN: 9781442265790

Category: Business & Economics

Page: 113

View: 352

"Collections: A Journal for Museum and Archives Professionals" is a multi-disciplinary peer-reviewed journal dedicated to the discussion of all aspects of handling, preserving, researching, and organizing collections. Curators, archivists, collections managers, preparators, registrars, educators, students, and others contribute.

Anthropology's Global Histories

Anthropology's Global Histories

Author: Rainer F. Buschmann

Publisher: University of Hawaii Press

ISBN: 9780824831844

Category: Social Science

Page: 250

View: 398

Anthropologists and world historians make strange bedfellows. Although the latter frequently employ anthropological methods in their descriptions of cross-cultural exchanges, the former have raised substantial reservations about global approaches to history. Fearing loss of specificity, anthropologists object to the effacing qualities of techniques employed by world historians—this despite the fact that anthropology itself was a global, comparative enterprise in the nineteenth century.Rainer Buschmann here seeks to recover some of anthropology’s global flavor by viewing its history in Oceania through the notion of the ethnographic frontier—the furthermost limits of the anthropologically known regions of the Pacific. The colony of German New Guinea (1884–1914) presents an ideal example of just such a contact zone. Colonial administrators there were drawn to approaches partially inspired by anthropology. Anthropologists and museum officials exploited this interest by preparing large-scale expeditions to German New Guinea. Buschmann explores the resulting interactions between German colonial officials, resident ethnographic collectors, and indigenous peoples, arguing that all were instrumental in the formation of anthropological theory. He shows how changes in collecting aims and methods helped shift ethnographic study away from its focus on material artifacts to a broader consideration of indigenous culture. He also shows how ethnological collecting, often a competitive affair, could become politicized and connect to national concerns. Finally, he places the German experience in the broader context of Euro-American anthropology. Anthropology's Global Histories will interest students and scholars of anthropology, history, world history, and Pacific studies.

Self-Determined First Nations Museums and Colonial Contestation

Self-Determined First Nations Museums and Colonial Contestation

Author: Robert Hudson

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 9781000595116

Category: Art

Page: 126

View: 599

Self-Determined First Nations Museums and Colonial Contestation explores Indigenous practices of curation, object repatriation, and cross-cultural community engagement in a dynamic Koori museum. Grounded in the fact that Gunai Kurnai people have never ceded sovereignty, the text reorients dominant temporal and colonial approaches of museum studies to document and theorise Gunai Kurnai self-presentation and community engagement in the Krowathunkooloong Keeping Place. Researched and co-authored by the Cultural Manager of the Keeping Place, Gunai Kurnai Monero Ngarigo man Robert Hudson, and white Historian Shannon Woodcock, the book traces the temporal, social, and cultural considerations of the Elders who curated the permanent exhibition in the early 1990s. Discussing community management of a collection growing through the ongoing repatriation of tools, art, and Ancestor remains, the text also explores how Robert Hudson engages with visitors to the Keeping Place and local colonial history museums, and theorises the power of Gunai Kurnai work with individuals and institutions in the small museum context. Finally, Hudson and Woodcock demonstrate that the Keeping Place articulates sophisticated Gunai Kurnai-grounded methodologies of museum practice in relation to international critical Indigenous studies scholarship. Self-Determined First Nations Museums and Colonial Contestation provides a vital case study of an Indigenous museum space written from an inside perspective. As such, the book will be essential reading for scholars and students engaged in the study of museums and heritage, Indigenous peoples, decolonisation, race, anthropology, culture, and history.