Reclaiming Heritage : Alternative Imaginaries of Memory in West Africa book cover
1st Edition

Reclaiming Heritage
Alternative Imaginaries of Memory in West Africa

ISBN 9781598743081
Published April 30, 2009 by Routledge
270 Pages

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Book Description

Struggles over the meaning of the past are common in postcolonial states. State cultural heritage programs build monuments to reinforce in nation building efforts—often supported by international organizations and tourist dollars. These efforts often ignore the other, often more troubling memories preserved by local communities—markers of colonial oppression, cultural genocide, and ethnic identity. Yet, as the contributors to this volume note, questions of memory, heritage, identity and conservation are interwoven at the local, ethnic, national and global level and cannot be easily disentangled. In a fascinating series of cases from West Africa, anthropologists, archaeologists and art historians show how memory and heritage play out in a variety of postcolonial contexts. Settings range from televised ritual performances in Mali to monument conservation in Djenne and slavery memorials in Ghana.

Table of Contents

Series Editor’s Chapter 1 Reconsidering Heritage and Memory, Michael Rowlands, Ferdinand de Jong; Chapter 2 ‘Taking on a Tradition’: African Heritage and the Testimony of Memory, Beverley Butler; Chapter 3 Slave Route Projects: Tracing the Heritage of Slavery in Ghana, Katharina Schramm; Chapter 4 Picturing the Past: Heritage, Photography, and the Politics of Appearance in a Yoruba City, Peter Probst; Chapter 5 Entangled Memories and Parallel Heritages in Mali, Michael Rowlands; Chapter 6 ‘Enchanting Town of Mud’: Djenné, a World Heritage Site in Mali, Charlotte Joy; Chapter 7 A Masterpiece of Masquerading: Contradictions of Conservation in Intangible Heritage, Ferdinand de Jong; Chapter 8 From a Glorious Past to the Lands of Origin: Media Consumption and Changing Narratives of Cultural Belonging in Mali, Dorothea E. Schulz; Chapter 9 Demystified Memories: The Politics of Heritage in Post-Socialist Guinea, Ramon Sarró; Chapter 10 Palimpsest Memoryscapes: Materializing and Mediating War and Peace in Sierra Leone, Paul Basu;

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Ferdinand de Jong, Michael Rowlands