Politics and Poetics of Museums: Repatriation and decolonisation

Course Dates: 03/08/24 - 04/08/24
Time: 10:30 - 16:30
Location: Keeley Street
Routinely, the discussion on how to address the colonial and imperial past in relation to museum artifacts, collections and exhibitions appears in the media landscapes. The questions are difficult and answers are not straightforward. Join us to learn more and discuss this important challenge.
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Full fee £119.00 Senior fee £95.00 Concession £77.00
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Politics and Poetics of Museums: Repatriation and decolonisation
  • Course Code: HA034
  • Dates: 03/08/24 - 04/08/24
  • Time: 10:30 - 16:30
  • Taught: Sat-Sun, Daytime
  • Duration: 2 sessions
  • Location: Keeley Street
  • Tutor: Yasmin Hales

Course Code: HA034

Choose a start date  

Sat-Sun, day, 03 Aug - 04 Aug '24

Duration: 2 sessions

Please note: We offer a wide variety of financial support to make courses affordable. Just visit our online Help Centre for more information on a range of topics including fees, online learning and FAQs.

What is the course about?

This course will focus on a critical examination of the role of museums and ethnographic collections.

Students will be introduced to the contemporary theoretical discussions and debates concerning ethnographic museum collections in the 21st century and the preservation of cultural heritage.

What will we cover?

Some of the themes we question relate to the changing role in the acquisition of indigenous material from the 19thC. In contrast to the past, how are these cultural objects represented by and for whom today?

In our post-colonial society, what about the topical question of repatriation and returning all ‘museum cultural property’ back to their host culture?

What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...

- understand the broader debate on decolonising museum displays and collections
- assess the different voices in the debate and their perspectives
- speak about these complex matters with nuance and confidence.

What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?

The class is introductory and requires and assumes no prior knowledge or particular skills. As with many of our history and politics courses, however, a good grasp of English, curiosity and the willingness to think through different perspectives will help you enjoy the course. Please also note that the course will entail a free visit to a museum.

How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?

You will be taught through tutor presentation, a museum visit, Q & A and discussion. To conclude our discussion, students will have the opportunity to participate in a class role play to explore how an object departs from an African village, and with intervention from art dealters, anthropologists and curators, the object ends up in the British museum ethnographic gallery. Please also note that the course will entail a free visit to a museum.

Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?

There are no additional costs. You may wish to bring pen and paper, or digital equaivalents, for note-taking. Please also note that the course will entail a free visit to a museum.

When I've finished, what course can I do next?

HA007: Anthropology of space, place and the cultural landscape
HA035 : Corporate anthropology.

Yasmin Hales

Yasmin completed a BA (Hons) in Social Anthropology and an MA in the History of South Asian Art and Architecture which complemented her role as a museum educator and curator at the Victoria and Albert Museum, London. Her research interest in the social use of space, indigenous art and architecture was consolidated through ethnographic fieldwork in India, and latterly commenced doctoral research in the Anthropology of Architecture at Oxford Brookes University and UCL. Yasmin has lectured at various academic institutions including Birkbeck and University of Arts, and is currently based at City Lit and Goldsmiths University, teaching Anthropology modules including Intro to Anthropology, Anthropology of Art, Film and Photography and the Anthropology of Space, Place and the Landscape. She is currently involved in research at the UCL Media Anthropology Lab, working with digital research methods and indigenous Amazonian communities in South America. Yasmin has also curated a Tamil, South Indian community exhibition called the ‘Talking Streets’. ways. She is a freelance anthropology consultant, tutor and delivers a range of successful independent cultural workshops at Anthropology for all.

Please note: We reserve the right to change our tutors from those advertised. This happens rarely, but if it does, we are unable to refund fees due to this. Our tutors may have different teaching styles; however we guarantee a consistent quality of teaching in all our courses.