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A Place That Matters YetJohn Gubbins’s MuseumAfrica in the Postcolonial World$
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Sara Byala

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780226030272

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: September 2013

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226030449.001.0001

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The Enduring Struggle: The Utility of a Colonial Institution in the Postcolonial World

The Enduring Struggle: The Utility of a Colonial Institution in the Postcolonial World

Chapter:
(p.237) Conclusion The Enduring Struggle: The Utility of a Colonial Institution in the Postcolonial World
Source:
A Place That Matters Yet
Author(s):

Sara Byala

Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226030449.003.0007

This book concludes by analyzing the sad state of Gubbins’ plaque, and how it speaks to a global phenomenon. For we live today unsure of whether to adore, ignore, or expunge the remnants of old orders. Postcolonialism is a world where colonial and imperial remnants—be they institutions, laws, even land allocations—are tainted understandably and irreparably. At the same time, it is a world in which that which is old, authentic, and in some cases tribal is more exalted than ever. Museums hold a particularly fraught position in this equation. Having arisen from a nineteenth-century worldview, museums are often regarded as little more than outmoded Eurocentric impositions. Yet, a central argument of this book is that museums hold the potential to be reanimated if they are envisioned as archives.

Keywords:   global phenomenon, old orders, postcolonialism, imperial remnants, museums, nineteenth-century worldview, eurocentric impositions, archives

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