Department of African History
The Looting of Africa’s Artefacts
Public Lecture | Tuesday 6 July 2021, 6.30pm (UK)
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How did so many African artefacts end up in European museums?
Campaigns for the return of African artefacts are gaining steam from Scotland to Germany. Activists such as Emery Mwazulu Diyabanza have taken the resistance to museum gallery floors, while architects such as Sir David Adjaye are working with African leaders on the continent and diaspora to coordinate the return of items.
Many people have strong opinions about the artefacts in question and the illegality of their removal from sacred and historic sites. In this exciting conversation we will dive into the colonial wars of the later 19th and 20th centuries, explore the journeys the artefacts took from Africa to Europe and examine the moral and diplomatic arguments both against and in support of their return.
Join us as through the histories of these items we examine the events and legacies of the colonial wars, asking what Europe still has left to do to account for its colonial legacy.