March 23, 2004

Repatriating History

by PG

"[Y]et these rupees haunted his mind, because he had been tricked about them, and allowed them to escape overseas, like so much of the wealth of India." -- A Passage to India

Those in and around St. Louis later this week might stop in at the Washington University School of Law, which is hosting the Imperialism, Art & Restitution Conference on March 25-26. I favor the colonized in preference to the imperialists, although the issue of Native American sacred sites is more complicated.

If the Elgin/ Parthenon marbles could be removed from Greece, then they can be returned, and ought to be; surely no one will argue that Greece, a fellow member with Britain in the European Union, host of the 2004 Olympics and my planned vacation spot, is unable to care for its own cultural legacy. Land, on the other hand, is not a movable good, and to tear down what has been built upon it is far more difficult than transferring stone and metal from one museum to another.

March 23, 2004 03:12 PM | TrackBack

In a similar dichotomy I am torn over which Ben Kingsley performance I like best: "Gandhi" or the imperialistic comedy "Without a Clue."

Posted by: Brian at March 24, 2004 08:27 AM

I haven't seen "Without a Clue," but I did see Kingsley in "Twelfth Night," and he sounded bizarrely like Gandhi in it, which did not seem quite appropriate.

Posted by: PG at March 24, 2004 11:11 AM

Loathe? Pourquoi, monsieur? Having had to remove W&L for reputed homophobia, I'm left with few law school alternatives -- WashU is one of them.

Posted by: PG at March 25, 2004 02:39 PM
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