The Brutish Museums: the benin bronzes, colonial violence and cultural restitution

By: Hicks, Dan
Material type: TextTextPublisher: London Pluto Press 2020Description: xvii, 345 p.: ill. Includes bibliographical references and indexISBN: 9780745341767Subject(s): Museums - Acquisitions | Africa - Benin (Kingdom) | Western Europe | BronzesDDC classification: 069.4 Summary: Walk into any European museum today and you will see the curated spoils of Empire. They sit behind plate glass: dignified, tastefully lit. Accompanying pieces of card offer a name, date and place of origin. They do not mention that the objects are all stolen. Few artefacts embody this history of rapacious and extractive colonialism better than the Benin Bronzes - a collection of thousands of brass plaques and carved ivory tusks depicting the history of the Royal Court of the Obas of Benin City, Nigeria. Pillaged during a British naval attack in 1897, the loot was passed on to Queen Victoria, the British Museum and countless private collections. The story of the Benin Bronzes sits at the heart of a heated debate about cultural restitution, repatriation and the decolonisation of museums. In The Brutish Museums, Dan Hicks makes a powerful case for the urgent return of such objects, as part of a wider project of addressing the outstanding debt of colonialism. http://www.plutobooks.com/9780745341767/the-brutish-museums/
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Item type Current location Item location Collection Call number Status Date due Barcode
Books Vikram Sarabhai Library
General Stacks
Slot 121 (0 Floor, West Wing) Non-fiction 069.4 H4B7 (Browse shelf) Available 203133

Table of content

1. The Gun That Shoots Twice
2. A Theory of Taking
3. Necrography
4. White Projection
5. World War Zero
6. Corporate-Militarist Colonialism
7. War on Terror
8. The Benin-Niger-Soudan Expedition
9. The Sacking of Benin City
10. Democide
11. Iconoclasm
12. Looting
13. Necrology
14. 'The Museum of Weapons, etc.'
15. Chronopolitics
16. A Declaration of War
17. A Negative Moment
18. Ten Thousand Unfinished Events

Walk into any European museum today and you will see the curated spoils of Empire. They sit behind plate glass: dignified, tastefully lit. Accompanying pieces of card offer a name, date and place of origin. They do not mention that the objects are all stolen.
Few artefacts embody this history of rapacious and extractive colonialism better than the Benin Bronzes - a collection of thousands of brass plaques and carved ivory tusks depicting the history of the Royal Court of the Obas of Benin City, Nigeria. Pillaged during a British naval attack in 1897, the loot was passed on to Queen Victoria, the British Museum and countless private collections.
The story of the Benin Bronzes sits at the heart of a heated debate about cultural restitution, repatriation and the decolonisation of museums. In The Brutish Museums, Dan Hicks makes a powerful case for the urgent return of such objects, as part of a wider project of addressing the outstanding debt of colonialism.

http://www.plutobooks.com/9780745341767/the-brutish-museums/

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