Colonialism and the Object
Empire, Material Culture and the Museum
Edited by Tim Barringer, Tom Flynn
Published December 18th 1997 by Routledge – 240 pages
Series: Museum Meanings
Drawing together an international group of scholars from a variety of disciplinary and cultural backgrounds, Colonialism and the Object explores the impact of colonial contact with other cultures on the material culture of both the colonized and the imperial nation.
The book includes intensive case-studies of objects from India, Pakistan, New Zealand, China and Africa, all of which were collected by, or exhibited in, the institutions of the British Empire, and key chapters address issues of radical identity across cultural barriers, and the hybird styles of objects which can emerge when cultures meet.
Colonialism and the Object is essential reading for all those interested in post-colonial theory, museum studies, material culture and design history.
1. Introduction Part 1: 2. The South Kensington Museum and the Colonial Project 3. Chinese Material Culture and British Perceptions of China in the Mid-Nineteenth Century 4. China in Britain: The Imperial Collections 5. Colonial Architecture, International Exhibitions and Official Patronage of the Indian Artisan: The Case of a Gateway from Gwalior in the Victoria and Albert Museum 6. Stylistic Hybridity and Colonial Art and Design Education: A Wooden Carved Screen by Ram Singh 7. Race, Authenticity and Colonialism: A 'Mustice' Silversmith in Philadelphia and St. Croix, 1783-1850 8. Domesticating Uzbeks: Central Asians in Soviet Decorative Arts of the Twenties and Thirties 9. Keys to the Magic Kingdom: The Gallery of Transcultural Arts in Bradford Part 2: 10. Perspectives on Hinemihi - A Maori Meeting House 11. Maori Vision and the Imperialist Gaze 12. Gathering Souls and Objects: Missionary Collections 13. Photography at the Heart of Darkness: Herbert Lang's Congo Photographs (1909-15) 14. Taming the Tusk: Belgian Decorative Arts and the Promotion of Ivory as a Colonial Commodity at the 1897 Brussels International Exhibition Bibliography Index
Tim Barringer is a lecturer in History of Art at the University of Birmingham, following earlier positions at Birbeck College, University of London and the Victoria and Albert Museum, London.
Tom Flynn is a freelance art historian and writer. He is currently completing a book on sculpture and the body.