Symposium: ‘Commemorating the Past, Creating the Future: Kenya’s heritage crossroads’

This symposium was held at the British Library in London on 9 September 2011, and involved scholars from Kenya, the UK, Sweden and the US, including Dr Rodney Harrison (History Dept., OU). Hosted by Lotte Hughes (PI, OU), with Profs. Annie Coombes (Co-I, Birkbeck College, University of London) and Karega-Munene (United States International University, Nairobi, Kenya), this closed event featured presentations on a wide range of heritage and history-related subjects, including: memorialization as a human right; exhibiting photographic histories in Western Kenya; an examination of memorials to Barack Obama at K’Ogello; Akamba carving; memorialising Mau Mau; managing heritage as a resource for building nationhood and social cohesiveness; community conservation of sacred forests; an examination of displays on material culture and Kenyan identity at National Museums of Kenya;  the challenges of commemorating former president Daniel arap Moi; and efforts to commemorate Giriama heroine Mekatilili wa Menza.

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