Archaeologist and curator Chip Colwell collects artifacts for his museum, but he also returns them to where they came from. In a thought-provoking talk, he shares how some museums are confronting their legacies of stealing spiritual objects and pillaging ancient graves -- and how they're bridging divides with communities who are demanding the return of their cultural treasures.
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Thank you so much. I really appreciate how you express and face the sorrow of many peoples hidden behind those wonderful 'objects' in museums. Absolutely, all of them must be returned to the places where they originally come from. If the descendants of the creators of those works decide to stop to treat them as the object of worship and display them in a museum, it is their choice.
Egypt: thousands of ancient objects plundered from major Museums in Cairo during political upheaval;
Brazil: two major museus burnt on fire, due to deficient maintenance. Among the items destroyed forever, there was the oldest human fossil from Americas;
Afghanistan: Ancient Buda statues bombed by taliban extremists as part of a State policy while they were ruling the Country;
Iraq: thousands of artifacts looted from museums;
Siria: human cultural heritage being destroyed at an incalculable rate;
Go on, SJW! If you want to have all these objects destroyed, why dont just set a large balefire and throw them all inside. It's cheaper than returning them, and the results are the same!
The British , Iranian & Arabic invaders owe India billions due the amount of jewels , gemstones and gold they stole from the Indian people.
However, those cultures are very arrogant and see nothing wrong in their sins.
Most likely, nothing will happen.
Iran and Saudi are [email protected] countries. The UK is now ok with India. Let whoever has the kohinor diamond keep it and obtain its bad karma. (India has many faults, not refuting that. Ethiopia is cleaner than India ).
I just simply want to say to researchers whoever scientists or archaeologists.
if you want study something with human remains, dig your mom and dad's tomb and do what you like with that.
I don't care what he or she do with their remains of their ancestors. But don't do with those of other ones' ancestors. It's literally jackass's work.
1:28 - coincidence theyre all missing their heads?
This lie couldnt stand the test of time had their "black" features not have been destroyed.
"Egypt was the place where Alexander the Great went. He was in shock to see moutains w black faces (spinx)
So they shot off the nose to impose what basically still goes on today you see?" -Nas
My teacher is from a very tight nit amd resilient indigenous community from the highlands of oaxaca. She said her town’s codex is someone in the netherlands! Its so messed up what use do random white academics deserve this instead of the communities whose ancient wisdom it is
God of earth, god of thunder, God is three. None of this is true.
The truth is just that.
"Say, "He is Allah, [who is] One,
Allah, the Eternal Refuge.
He neither begets nor is born,
Nor is there to Him any equivalent."
(The Noble Quran. Surah Al Iklhas. Verse 1-4)
Say, "It is only revealed to me that your god is but one God; so will you be Muslims [in submission to Him]?"
(The Noble Quran. Surah Al Anbya. Verse 108)
And [Abraham] said, "You have only taken, other than Allah, idols as [a bond of] affection among you in worldly life. Then on the Day of Resurrection you will deny one another and curse one another, and your refuge will be the Fire, and you will not have any helpers."
(The Noble Quran. Surah Al Ankabut. Verse 25)
And how many a city have We destroyed that was insolent in its [way of] living, and those are their dwellings which have not been inhabited after them except briefly. And it is We who were the inheritors.
(The Noble Quran. Surah Al Qasas. Verse 58)
Listen to the voice of the Noble Quran.
Maybe your life will be changed If God allows.
French : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lVY8pwx9B74
This speech is part of a bigger discussion about how we as the inheritors of the colonial era should be reminded about our past. We should change how we see and approach musea. So often it is about objects of great wealth and not about idea's or viewpoints unique to the past or a culture. A museum could make the world look smaller instead of showing off our wealth and captured treasure's.
Do not forget that more than 80 percent of what we see in the French and American museums and admire is a precious historical treasure of a country other than their own. The fact that the cultural assets obtained by looting other countries in the past are packed as if they were cultural properties and that they are seen by others show that they are inferior to their own poor cultural properties ,.
I think that human cultural assets are real values when they are in the birth place of the cultural assets. The value of a cultural property is not in the museum that holds it, but in the place where the cultural assets were born. It is only the authenticity of the value .
Things like the Native Americans I understand, but the Egyptian artifacts are from an ancient civilization who's culture no longer exists. It's from so long ago that that you have whites, blacks and middle eastern all arguing over who the true descendants are.
My countries(Bosnia and Herzegovina) birth certificate is in Russia and as is, it's not coming back. It's nice to hear that someone understands what history can mean for someone. (The document is called The charter of Ban Kulin if you're interested )
I disagree with returning objects, they are part of all human history and should be treated as such, that means keeping them in good condition and preserving them for generations to come. That is best in western museums with stable political, social and economic conditions.
You are god damn right! Musea are way less receptable to change over generations. What if a culture changes and discards a sacred object. What if it get's destoyed during a storm or fire. How could a group of people guarantee that their artefact will remain preserved the next hundred years. They can't.
Those sacred objects were more often than not brazenly STOLEN, not bargained for or they got the village drunk to steal them and deliver them and these white grave robbers knew full well that they were stealing them with one hand as they threw the Judeo-Christian doctrines at our people with the other hand. A useless theology not even adhered to by the proselytizers of that false doctrine.
The reasons they are in museums is so they don't get stolen, lost, or destroyed throughout time so that history can be preserved. Without museums we wouldn't have much historical context because these items would have been looted by thieves, destroyed by warring factions or religions, or buried never to be found again.
+maidden Well then we better seal up those pharaohs and send all the paintings back and gather all the literature so as never to be seen or known of again. That way our collective knowledge of the past can diminish so much that origins of art, literature, science, math, civilization, religion, and people all together can disappear. Cuz mah virtue reasons.
Conservatives in one country fighting conservatives in another. While im sure they both imagine some other ideology being at fault here. Talk about culture of victimhood.
It seems like the culturely sensitive people are just trying to bridge the gap rather then taking a big part in the battle.
Got an idea. How about non whites randomly seek white households, churches, establishments, etc. And kill to loot and steal any treasure found. Then set these treasures up in THEIR homes, buildings, etc. And establish these as new museums. Using the logic of whites(many commenters here) this would be completely acceptable.(their goods will be kept 'safe'). These whites would.never want to be revealed a hypocrites(many will agree with this).
+gnihton blathering from the Anglo spawn of the world's most accomplished(PROVEN) thieves. A species(anglo) that's stolen lands, cultures, people, etc.(and continues to do so as theft, murder and deviance is it's sole religion). If that's 'chimp logic' I'll subscribe to that over anglo neanderthal logic anytime. The only hope for the planet is complete eradication of these neanderthal beasts.
Native americans are lucky they are still alive, they are worthless leeches on our great country. Why dont you talk about how much a year is spent on them? How much land is wasted on them? Can on TED, show the OTHER SIDE AND NOT BE ALWAYS BIASED.
They couldnt go to any land, we brought horses to the land to help them. To this day they worship a GIFT us Europeans brought here for them. They roamed land, they didnt own any land and since we came here we gave them land and since then they have lived in peace. They were killing each other and cutting off their scalps like the craziest serial killer alive. "natives" are the most brutal and uneducated people ever found around the world while any people explored the earth.
Someone needs to read what Christopher Colombus did around the 15th century when he stumbled upon the Americas. Him and the rest Europeans that raped, tortured and killed the N A T I V E S.
And you're complaining as if it's them that came in your land.
Many sacred objects have been stolen from tribes all around the world, sold by corrupt people or acquired officially through laws that don't recognize, much less respect the rights and wishes of their original and rightful owners. A lot of them have also been vandalized by people with "Artistic Spirit" trying to "Improve" them.
What right do you have to take something that belongs to someone else? Even when they are constantly asking you to give it back? You could say "It's just a rock/a pile of bones/ a piece of wood, it's no big deal, get over it", well it may not be important to you but it is to them.
What if I took the Mona Lisa to my home and improved it with a moustache? What if someone decided to dig a family member out of their grave without asking your family? What if someone stole your favorite statue from your backyard and hid it in their basement because "It's going to get ruined there"? Wouldn't you be angry and offended?
Taking sacred objects away from people is taking away their right to practice their own culture and religion, which are basic human rights, however these tribes are often seen as simply primitive, ignorant and superstitious, so they are not given even minimal human respect and usually have no way of protecting themselves.
I don't like religion or superstitions, and I get science is important, but not more than people, they have a right to believe and have their sacred objects with them, denying that from them is disrespectful, abusive and immoral.
If you want to see it or study it you can ask for permission, it's not that hard, then this people can say if they'll allow it or not, it's their choice, not anyone else's.
In Brazil we had 2 indigenous peoples' museums in Rio de Janeiro. The first one's collection had outgrown it, so the second one was established in a larger facility. The first museum then went into disrepair, and got to the point of being closed for safety reasons. And then something amazing happened.
Indigenous people discovered the old abandoned museum and began camping inside the premises when passing through town. When questioned, they just said they were indigenous people taking care of the indigenous people's museum. In their own precarious situation, they breathed new live into the old museum, which quickly became a hub for indigenous populations, activists, athropologists and everything in between. A living thriving polytribe camping community developed. It has workshops, it had classes, it had a bit of social work, it had festivals, it had he tribes speaking for themselves to whoever wanted to learn from the primary source.
But when this community applied for official recognition as an institution, a living museum and cultural centre, they were denied. When the academic community of humanities and social sciences vouched for this community, it was ignored. When the Soccer World Cup came and the community was considered too ugly, too ideologically dangerous, too prone to inconvenient protesting, it was removed by force. To this day the old museum remains empty, just a ruin and nothing else. And thus ended the best native american museum experience ever. The end.
Use all the imaging technology you can to make near-perfect computer models which can be studied indefinitely by unlimited numbers of people and can be used as blueprints for identical recreations. Return the original artefacts to the cultures who created them.
Well yes, of course you will ask the Egyptian government for permission or join an egyptological project (that will also ask the government for permission). How do you think you can get there in the first place ? It's about the authorities, not so much about the people who live there.
Also - the Cairo Museum has so many artifacts that just stay in the museum depot. What's the use of having this many artifacts that almost noone will ever see ? Why should we return the objects if it helps spreading knowledge and awareness of this ancient civilisation and the circumstances that may endanger ancient remains ?
So, do you really think that there is alive direct, DNA-proved descendant of some Ankhesenamun?
I don't think so. All humanity have equal right for such ancient things. So better it would be in state that funds archaelogists and museums.
No you don't seem to understand that the descends of Ancient Egyptians are very much alive and they have asked for their stuff back. England and other countries know that those artifacts were obtained by violent and dishonest means and they don't care. If you really think it's okay to steal and kill for artifacts then you most definitely are morally bankrupt. I can't explain morality to a soulless person and I can't explain facts to a stupid person so you need to become educated or seek psychological help.
Nancy Wagoner I see ur point but i never say they wanted the fee. Here a scenario of what I think what actually happen. Let say the person stole the item doesn't vale it anyone. Do you think he or she will continue to spent money maintaining it, no right he or she will most likely dispose it. Therefore disposing mean returning that item back.
Why should indigenous peoples have to repay preservation costs for items that were stolen? If someone stole your car, and the thief spent a lot money to preserve your car, would you repay his costs to get your stolen car back?
It sounds like cultures want to separate from populations they don’t want to share any of their history because they believe the people who possess it don’t deserve it maybe it’s true but how does that promote the human race
+Христо Мартунков, граф Лозенски It shouldn't be. If you want to see the ORIGINAL piece, then you should go to the place where it belongs. Otherwise, just go see a copy in the nearest museum or Google a picture of it.
The problem is that many of these "cultures" can't or won't preserve these artifacts.
The statues & artifacts that were left behind in the Middle East were intentionally destroyed by ISIS when they came to power.
Have you ever read about the Bonfire of the Vanities? Religious morons love to destroy history.
There are clear situation but then there are also situations like in Syria or Iraq, where giving them back would have destroyed them, for the ancestors of the creators as well as mankind. In the case of natives, there is the question whether there would be the option of exhibiting and conserve them - what is worse, keeping them from direct access of the culture they belong to or keep them for coming generations. The sad truth is that a lot of those artifacts only remain because they were stolen. There is just a huge grey area and the decision has to be made from case to case.
ok, let`s say they want to get their cultural objective back for their own reasons, then pay back the money invested to find that object, i mean, that is fair. Let`s see how many will pay for them then.
Most of these artifacts were found by individuals or funded by colleges or other organizations not government funding and since many of them are donated why should they pay them if they themselves got it for free
Well, what's obvious to you or me might be outrageous to other folks. I remember a few years ago in my neck of the woods, some local university had uncovered an 8,000 year old Native American skull, and the local tribe instantly demanded that it be given back. "Let someone at least take a fucking DNA sample from the thing before we bury it back in the Earth forever," I thought. Which the university did in the end, but not before being sued by the tribe, who won their case and eventually got the skull back.
Frankly, if you could have somehow described to the neolithic man that the skull belonged to that his existence and his bloodline would be remembered for all time to come by both his descendants and everyone else in the world, my guess is that he would have been pretty fucking thrilled by that prospect. Most indigenous peoples in history practiced one form or another of ancestor worship, and what's more "ancestor worshipy" than have a high-resolution DNA sample with a hard timestamp that will never be forgotten as long as humanity continues to exists?
At the beginning of Sakoku (xenophobic isolationism), the were 80,000 Ainu. When it ended, there were 17,000. According to Japanese records, they all died of smallpox when the rest of the world wasn't watching.
SJW, COMMUNIST BULLSHIT.................. Former Yugoslavia would like their country and culture back.......WHEN YOU LOSE IT AINT YOUR'S ANY MORE....IF YOU FIND IT........ ITS YOURS...........IF I FIND A HUNDRED DOLLARS.......THEN SOME ONE CLAIMS THEY LEFT IT THEIR............DO I GIVE IT BACK TO THEM??????? OR DO I PUT IT IN MY POCKET?
dude, I usually don bother with YT comments but this one is so stupid I have to waste time taking it apart. First of your use of the word lebensraum is both concerning and amusing in equal measure the fact you have found a way to compare Native Americans to Nazi's defies logic and leads me to suspect that you are a troll.
Not all native Americans were nomadic some of them did have land and the USA did sign treaties saying they would not encroach on said land any further, frankly Im not sure why the native Americans held any faith in said treaties after they were routinely dishonoured.
You see seem to be referring to the Dakota access protests, bear in mind that said pipeline is a threat to the regions water supply and burial grounds, so yeah if an organisation starts construction in your area which might mean that the water won't be safe to drink and your relatives graves will be disturbed you have a right to try and stop that. Also you seem to condone the use of tear gas on these people, I know there is a more eloquent way to say this but your comment is a perfect example of the kind of stage four inoperable cancer that pervades YT comment sections.
Or how about we don’t the “natives” stop whining about land and thier ideas of Lebensraum. Realise they made us keep paying and fighting for land we controlled already and that they are NOMADIC AND THEY DONT AND DID NOT HAVE A LAND! and the UN what are the6 going to do demand the best nation in the world give up most of the Midwest that is more German, Irish, and of course American than Indian because America used tear gas on illegal protesters, protesting a pipeline that was not even in ”their land”
Ok I get what you are saying. But are you ok if The Decleration of Indepence is stolen and is stored in a museum in a foreign country like China and Russia? After all its just an old parchment with a lot of copies of it. And besides they can take better care of it just like in the USA.
stefanos2691 - 9/11 is unrelated to cultural treasures. I'm sorry I need to point this out to you. May I recommend a visit to a library? They have books, books contain knowledge which you might find useful.
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As a child, there was a portrait in our family home in Paris that I always loved. Today, it’s known as Maya with Doll – but to me it was just a portrait of my mother, albeit a remarkable one. “Your grandfather was a painter,” she would say, whenever the subject of the canvas, one of many that hung around the house, came up in discussion. It was only when I began school, and whispers about my heritage started to follow me, that I realised what an understatement that was. My grandfather was far more than a painter. He was the defining figure of 20th-century art – and, as I would learn later from years of academic study, a true genius. It was a revelation that would shape the course of my life in many ways. When Picasso died – in 1973, the year before I was born – he left behind 45,000 works, not to mention personal objects and correspondence.