Strengthening the foundations: against the erasing of memory

Strengthening the foundations: against the erasing of memory The events of the past six years have sharpened Gilroy's observations. At the same time, they have made it increasingly clear that, despite the real progress achieved, attempts to maintain privileges based on structural and systemic inequality, whether in terms of class, gender or race, have become even more obstinate. Attempts that go hand in hand with the futile but devastating efforts to deny history and impose the erasure of memory.

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18.02.2021 | by Paulo de Medeiros

Patrice Lumumba, 60 Years Later

Patrice Lumumba, 60 Years Later On June 30, 1960, at the ceremony for the proclamation of independence of the Congo, there were three speeches: from King Baudouin of Belgium, the former colonizing power, the President of the Congo, Joseph Kasavubu, and Patrice Lumumba, Prime Minister, the latter in an intervention not foreseen in the initial protocol. It was a short speech of about twelve minutes, written in an accessible and incisive language, performative and visual, a speech that, as the historian Jean Omasombo Tshonda defends, "founds the independent Congo". The first eight minutes are the clearest definition of what colonialism is from the point of view of a continent, a country, a community, a person.

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01.02.2021 | by Margarida Calafate Ribeiro

Works of art in the post memory condition (Conclusion)

Works of art in the post memory condition (Conclusion) In the face of this new narrative that acknowledges artistic production and an appreciation of it by African communities, how do secular cultural traditions of African countries interact today with artistic training and production, in the case of Afrodescendant artists, who were born and raised in European countries? How do events in the history of Africa and Africans combine with the artistic languages of the "European schools" and, in particular, with contemporary themes?

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28.12.2020 | by António Pinto Ribeiro

This war is not yours

This war is not yours What I seek in these encounters with overseas veterans is something I am unable to translate into a simple, telegraphic formula. Among these veterans there is a very strong sense of community, an almost familiar, almost tribal communion, which at certain times seems to me incompatible with a broader sense of community. It is a communion that tends to exclude me and all those who have not shared the same experience. What I seek in these conversations are the moments, similar to epiphanies, when veterans express belonging to a larger, more comprehensive human community, necessarily organized around moral values.

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13.12.2020 | by Paulo Faria

Cintested memories the "african quarter" in Berlin

Cintested memories the "african quarter" in Berlin German colonial experience, as is well-known, was relatively short: the defeat of the Reich in 1918 brought about its abrupt end, since the several punitive measures set up by the Treaty of Versailles included the obligation for Germany to surrender all colonial territories in its possession. This goes a long way to explain why, contrary to the Holocaust, the history of German colonialism – although it was similarly marked by forms of extreme violence, culminating in the genocide of the Herero and Nama peoples in 1904-1906 in so-called German South-West Africa – is today largely absent from German public memory, having, concomitantly, been long subalternized by German historic research.

City

13.12.2020 | by António Sousa Ribeiro

The coronavirus and memories of the end of the world

The coronavirus and memories of the end of the world O sentimento de vulnerabilidade partilhada que hoje vivemos, enredados na crise encetada pelo coronavírus, interroga-nos, também, sobre os limites da nossa memória para democratizarmos o nosso passado, descolonizando as hierarquias raciais, coloniais e patriarcais que definem o que é alheio. Na “lembrança minha” deveria lembrar-me de inúmeras histórias de fim do mundo, histórias há muito testemunhadas por aqueles e aquelas para quem a COVID-19 é apenas mais episódio de uma continuada exposição à desigual distribuição da precariedade.

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30.03.2020 | by Bruno Sena Martins

Absence: the material of memory

Absence: the material of memory Nothing could better show that the art of memory, in the way that Boltanski thinks about it and makes it, is memory itself. It knows its workings and saves it from erasure. This is the lesson that Christian Boltanski repeats to us in all the corners of his immense oeuvre. And that, literally, makes time.

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07.03.2020 | by Roberto Vecchi

Rituals of a fractured memory

Rituals of a fractured memory We can establish, through renewed rituals, a collective ethic of memory. This shows that the fractured past has to be used with a sense of responsibility that is public, and not private, that is of the present, and not of the past. This responsibility concerns not only Northern Ireland, but all the unheralded contexts of divided memory. Ours too.

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28.01.2020 | by Roberto Vecchi

The “war of statues” and the colour of memory

The “war of statues” and the colour of memory It would be a supreme fantasy to think, naively, that we can fully recognize the black blood that lies beneath the foundations of nation-empires and post-empires if we also leave in place the very stones that sustain and adorn the idea of the nation.

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28.01.2020 | by Bruno Sena Martins

La grande bellezza: a brief note on culture in Italy, today

La grande bellezza: a brief note on culture in Italy, today We urgently need a return to culture as the filter between individuals and the political, broadly conceived. Without this we will not escape from the current situation that, not only in Italy, finds its reflection in the protagonist of Paolo Sorrentino’s acclaimed La Grande Bellezza: the tragic, failed, mundane visage of Jep Gambardella.

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28.01.2020 | by Lívia Apa

The french state and the portuguese state in the face of the arrival of the pieds-noirs and the retornados

The french state and the portuguese state in the face of the arrival of the pieds-noirs and the retornados In France, in spite of the economic context of the Trente Glorieuses being favourable to the absorption of labour, the socioprofessional characteristics of the French people who arrived from Algeria did not correspond to the needs of the French labour market, which required industrially qualified workers. In the Portuguese case the inverse situation pertained.

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02.01.2020 | by Morgane Delaunay

Luanda, Lisboa, Paradise?

Luanda, Lisboa, Paradise? What is at stake in Djaimilia Pereira de Almeida’s book are the living, human ruins of empire. No longer based on the figure of the veteran or the returnee, but on someone from the other side of the line colonialism traced: a black man and, in this case, the complex figure that colonialism generated, the assimilated African who, here, for the first time in Portuguese literature, is at the centre of the narrative.

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26.12.2019 | by Margarida Calafate Ribeiro

Postmemory and resentment

Postmemory and resentment The construction of postmemory is a complex process which may take place in very different ways and, as is worth repeating, is never simply based on transmission, but, rather, implies an active positioning, a decision, on the part of members of a second generation. Such a decision is never simply played out at a strictly rational level, it inevitably presupposes a high degree of emotional involvement.

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30.11.2019 | by António Sousa Ribeiro

Us, them, why? (by way of Paulo Faria)

Us, them, why? (by way of Paulo Faria) ‘The Missing Face’ is a powerful reflection on the war, and above all on the ownership of traumatic experiences of conflict, specifically at the end of Portuguese colonialism in Africa.

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12.11.2019 | by Felipe Cammaert

Museums: the ultimate contact zones

Museums: the ultimate contact zones Museums are democratising, inclusive and polyphonic spaces for critical dialogue about the pasts and the futures. Acknowledging and addressing the conflicts and challenges of the present, they hold artefacts and specimens in trust for society, safeguard diverse memories for future generations and guarantee equal rights and equal access to heritage for all people.

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07.11.2019 | by António Pinto Ribeiro

New navigators of Portuguese cultural memory

New navigators of Portuguese cultural memory I imagine these as the “new navigators”, appropriating this controversial term to describe them in part because of their fearlessness, or perhaps more accurately their braving fear, in dis-covering, in the sense of recovering and uncovering, monstrous aspects of the past as a way to make sense of monstrous aspects of the present.

Games Without Borders

13.10.2019 | by Sharon Lubkemann Allen

Silly, sinister, season: on “the responsibility of intellectuals” (i)

Silly, sinister, season: on “the responsibility of intellectuals” (i) One that stands in contrast to the government’s disregard for democratic procedure – even as it claims to be pushing on the “people’s will” – was the publication of a book by University College London’ Press, with the title of The Responsibility of Intellectuals: Reflections by Noam Chomsky and others after 50 years.

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01.10.2019 | by Paulo de Medeiros

Waiting for the Next Future (I)

Waiting for the Next Future (I) These visible and invisible movements, transparent or subterranean, brought a new vision of black cultural presence to the world in places far beyond Africa. They brought, too, a new perspective on an African continent. Portugal, which had historically opened its doors to the first waves of globalization, was looking to the future with realism and with desire.

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01.10.2019 | by Margarida Calafate Ribeiro

Waiting for the Next Future (II)

Waiting for the Next Future (II) Next Future ended by opening up to the future, with a nod towards a Europe and a Eurocentrism which has hardly considered African and Latin American comic books, crime writing, science fiction or visual animation. A challenge to museums and virtual exhibitions was launched with the project-exhibition Unplace – Networked Art: Places-Between-Places.

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01.10.2019 | by Margarida Calafate Ribeiro

The memory and history inscribed in the genetic technologies of fighting crime

The memory and history inscribed in the genetic technologies of fighting crime The mission of the EXCHANGE project (2015-2020) (2) is to reflect critically on the perpetuation of the “European dream” of a community of solidarity in which national, linguistic and cultural differences are overcome to produce a space in which citizens can move freely and safely. The surveillance technologies that the project studies have a shared feature: they are genetic machineries that seek to identify individuals for the purposes of criminal prosecution.

Games Without Borders

07.09.2019 | by Sheila Khan and Helena Machado