The legal framework for the destruction of cultural heritage in Timbuktu during 2012-2013: Concluding considerations (7/7)

Nanette Askholm BulowArticle, Report1 Comment

Man in Timbuktu. Photo credit: Mission de l'ONU au Mali - UN Mission in Mali via Foter.com / CC BY-NC-SA

The destruction of Sufi shrines and ancient manuscripts in Timbuktu, Mali, received a good deal of intention from the national and international community. Attitudes to cultural heritage has occasionally been criticized for being euro-centric. The prosecution of Ahmad Al Faqi Al Mahdi for the destruction of the shrines by the ICC under the Rome Statute, the action taken to safeguard … Read More

The legal framework for destruction of cultural heritage in Timbuktu during 2012-2013: Further legal considerations (6/7)

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The Tomb of Askia standing 17 m tall. Photo credit: UNESCO Africa

Destruction of World Heritage The UNESCO Convention concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage of 1972 ought to be considered in connection to the conflict in Mali and the destruction of its cultural heritage. Especially so, considering that the targeted shrines were considered World Heritage as a part of the inscribed city of Timbuktu, and as it … Read More

The legal framework for destruction of cultural heritage in Timbuktu during 2012-2013: A War-crime? (5/7)

Nanette Askholm BulowArticle, Report1 Comment

Ansar Dine. Photo credit: Magharebia

Both of the cases in Timbuktu involve the destruction of tangible cultural heritage. The intention to destroy these bodies is set within the context of conflict and may be interpreted in relation to it or as a result of it. The events therefore may be considered within such international frameworks:   The Hague Convection for the Protection of Cultural Property … Read More

Exhibition Review: Turquoise Mountain: Artists Transforming Afghanistan, Sackler Gallery, Washington D.C.

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Turquoise Mountain: Artists Transforming Afghanistan

A visitor to Washington D.C. might easily miss the Freer|Sackler Gallery. It is smaller, specialized, and less publicized than many of the other Smithsonian galleries on the National Mall. To reach the venue for “Turquoise Mountain,” housed in the Smithsonian’s International Gallery, a visitor enters through a nondescript floating doorway adjacent to the main entrance of theFreer|Sackler Gallery.. The visitor descends down … Read More

The legal framework for the destruction of cultural heritage in Timbuktu during 2012-2013: What is the background for destruction of cultural heritage? (2/7)

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The Bamiyan Buddhas today. Photo credit: DVIDSHUB via Foter.com / CC BY

Political instability The conflict in Mali is complicated in its origin and may be connected to political unrest in the state prior to the military coup on the 21st of March 2012. Significantly such unrest may be traced back to the insurgency movements in the 1990’s. The North of Mali is home to the nomadic ethnic group – Tuareg, who … Read More

The legal framework for the destruction of cultural heritage in Timbuktu during 2012-2013: The manuscripts and shrines of Timbuktu (3/7)

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Historical Background The city of Timbuktu has carried significance since the 12th century and especially carried significance during the domination of the Songhay Empire from the 15th to the 16th Century. The city took great advantage of its strategic position and became a centre for both trade, scientific developments and as the heart of spiritual and Islamic thought in Africa. … Read More

The legal framework for the destruction of cultural heritage in Timbuktu during 2012-2013: The significance of the cases (4/7)

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Sankore mosque

The manuscripts of Mali are significant as they represent a history of written tradition in Africa. This aspect of African history has often been overlooked and its absence has been applied within a post-colonial context as argumentation for the inferiority of African civilizations and culture. Another element often emphasized as argumentation for the devaluation of African heritage – is the absence … Read More

The legal framework for the destruction of cultural heritage in Timbuktu during 2012-2013: Overview (1/7)

Nanette Askholm BulowArticle, ReportLeave a Comment

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The military coup in Timbuktu in March 2012, caused the escalation of political and religious unrest in Northern Mali. The internal instability of the country soon caught the attention of the global public after two separate cases of destruction of cultural heritage in Timbuktu had occurred. The first of these events occurred in the summer of 2012 months after the ... Read More

The Antiquities Coalition Releases Interactive Map of Culture Under Threat

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Antiquities Coalition. 2016. “Culture Under Threat Map,” The Antiquities Coalition

The global heritage destruction caused by Daesh and other terrorist groups is sadly in the news all to often. Yet when their activities are viewed as individual incidents it can be difficult to grasp the scale and scope of cultural devastation that is being inflicted across the region. In effort to visually show the broad scale of cultural heritage destruction … Read More

The Heritage Landscape: Key Players and Current Issues (Notes on the Past for Sale Conference, 2015: Part 2)

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crisis in syria

This is the second installment of a review of the symposium Archaeological Looting: Realities and Possibilities for New Policy Approaches conference, held at the University of Chicago, in February 2015. It focuses on the keynote speech given by Dr. Neil Brodie, as well as on further proceedings of the second and final panel of day two. Read the first installment … Read More