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Accepted Paper:

The legacy of colonial museums in the dawn of the nation-State: the Dundo museum and the national anthropology museum in Angola  
Suzana Sousa (University of the Western Cape)

Paper short abstract:

How can independence and nation-building processes reflect the museum as institution or as a scientific space of narration? The 40 years gap of these two museums, and the historical processes that separate them such as the liberation war, was it enough to dismantle the colonial legacy of the museum?

Paper long abstract:

The Dundo Museum in Angola was created as a scientific space to gather information on population and culture and to preserve the artifacts considered to be endangered by colonization. 40 years later the national anthropology museum was founded to celebrate a year of independence and the cultural diversity of the country. Although immersed in a nation-building narrative the NMA carries the same concerns of preservation and of the other replacing the neutral colonial for a new neutral citizen that has the power to preserve, to gaze, to expose and collect. The process maintains the museum as a space of othering and of building belonging and citizenship in the new nation. Looking at this two museums in this paper I will interrogate the museum as institution and its role in the nation-building process of independent Angola.

Panel Arts16
Rebuilding museums and museologies in Africa
  Session 2 Friday 2 June, 2023, -