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To Whom Does Culture Belong?

Press Release

Berlin, 5. September 2019

To Whom Does Culture Belong?
Public panel discussion as part of the symposium Interdisciplinarity Revisited

The Humboldt Forum invites you to a public panel discussion entitled To whom does culture belong? at 6.30 pm on 3 October 2019, in the Humboldt Forum im Berliner Schloss, Schlossplatz, 10178 Berlin (access via the southern construction site entrance on the corner of Breite Str. and Schlossplatz). The director general of the Humboldt Forum, Hartmut Dorgerloh, will be discussing the question of cultural property with international experts. The event is part of a two-day symposium entitled Interdisciplinarity Revisited (#InterdiscRev), organised by the Volkswagen Foundation, the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin and the Stiftung Humboldt Forum im Berliner Schloss.

The event will take place in German, English and French with translations provided into those languages. Entry is free of charge, and registration is possible online here Audience capacity is limited due to the ongoing construction works.

Press representatives are requested to apply to michael.mathis@humboldtforum.org for accreditation by 2 October 2019.

How should we deal with objects from colonial contexts? There is a broad spectrum of responses to this question, including joint research into inventories, loans to the societies of origin, and even the restitution of entire collections. The Humboldt Forum is at the centre of this debate and has a particular responsibility with regard to the future of ethnological collections and their presentation in the museum context.

To Whom Does Culture Belong? Hartmut Dorgerloh will be coming to grips with this question with four international scientists and curators using a transdisciplinary approach to encompass differing perspectives. This will also be the main methodology for future work in the Humboldt Forum. In the panel discussion, art historian Abdoulaye Touré from Dakar will be examining the topic from an educational and art history perspective. Henry J. Drewal from Wisconsin will be adding an anthropological view, while Sharon Macdonald will be bringing the perspective of social anthropology to the discussion. As a lawyer, Corinne Hershkovitch will be looking at the legal aspects of the issue. Following the panel discussion the audience is warmly invited to contribute their own questions to the evening’s proceedings.

Henry John Drewal is Evjue-Bascom Professor of Art History and Afro-American Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He received his doctorate in African art, history and culture from Columbia University – a path inspired by apprenticeships with Yoruba sculptors in Nigeria.

Corinne Hershkovitch is a lawyer specializing in art law; she works on questions relating to origins, restitution, funding, authenticity, right of ownership, insurance, cross-border transactions involving art, and the reacquisition of lost or illegally acquired art and cultural heritage. She currently lectures at the Université Paris 2 Panthéon Assas.

Sharon Macdonald holds the Alexander von Humboldt Professorship of Social Anthropology at the Institut für Europäische Ethnologie of the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, where she directs the Centre for Anthropological Research on Museums and Heritage (CARMAH). She is also a member of the scientific advisory council for the Berlin Exhibition in the Humboldt Forum.

Abdoulaye Touré is a professor at the Institut Fondamental d’Afrique Noire Cheikh Anta Diop (Fundamental Institute of Black Africa Cheikh Anta Diop, IFAN), which he also directs. He holds a doctorate in the arts and humanities with a focus on modern and recent history. He also directs the IFSN’s departments for the humanities and museums and was curator in the Gorée Historical Museum.

Hartmut Dorgerloh is an art historian, curator of monuments and director and chief executive officer of the Humboldt Forum im Berliner Schloss. From 2002 to 2018 he was general director of the Stiftung Preußische Schlösser und Gärten Berlin-Brandenburg. Since 2004 he has lectured as an honorary professor at the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin.

Further Information on the panel discussion is available online at humboldtforum.org, and on the two-day symposium at volkswagenstiftung.de.

To Whom Does Culture Belong?

Public panel discussion as part of the symposium Interdisciplinarity Revisited

Date Friday, 3 October 2019
Time 6.30 pm
Doors open at 6.00 pm
Location Humboldt Forum im Berliner Schloss, access via the southern construction site entrance (Baustelleneingang Süd), Breite Straße / Schlossplatz Language: German, English and French (with translations as required into those languages).
Entry is free of charge, with online registration here

Requests for press accreditation should be sent per email to michael.mathis@humboldtforum.org

This event takes place as part of the symposium Interdisciplinarity Revisited organised by the Volkswagen Foundation, the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, and the Stiftung Humboldt Forum im Berliner Schloss.

The Stiftung Humboldt Forum im Berliner Schloss is funded by the Federal Commissioner for Culture and Media on the basis of a resolution by the German Federal Parliament.

The actors participating in the Humboldt Forum are the Stiftung Preußischer Kulturbesitz (SPK) with the Ethnologisches Museum and the Museum für Asiatische Kunst of the Staatliche Museen zu Berlin (SMB), Kulturprojekte Berlin and Stadtmuseum Berlin, and the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin (HU), with the Stiftung Humboldt Forum im Berliner Schloss (SHF) at the helm.

Media partner Deutschlandfunk Kultur

Symposium Interdisciplinarity Revisited

Interdisciplinarity has been a key term in the scientific world for many years now. And yet it continues to lack a clear definition, as well as encompassing many different concepts and methods. At this symposium, which has been organized by the Volkswagen Foundation, the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, and the Stiftung Humboldt Forum im Berliner Schloss, international experts will be discussing the methodologies behind the concept and the effects they engender in research and teaching contexts. The seven separate sessions of the symposium will investigate the possibilities and limitations of interdisciplinary cooperation and their significance for the discovery of new areas of research. The symposium is the first major scientific event at the Humboldt Forum.

Date Thursday, 3 October 2019 and Friday, 4 October 2019.
Location Humboldt Forum im Berliner Schloss.

Information and registration for interested scientists at volkswagenstiftung.de.

Press representatives are also invited to attend individual sessions. Please contact pr@hu-berlin.de.de for media accreditation and to arrange individual interviews.

Press contacts

Boris Nitzsche, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, deputy press officer +49 30 2093 29 45, boris.nitzsche@hu-berlin.de

Jens Rehländer, Volkswagen Foundation, head of communications +49 511 838 13 80, rehlaender@volkswagenstiftung.de

Michael Mathis, Stiftung Humboldt Forum im Berliner Schloss, press officer, +49 151 1617 97 27, michael.mathis@humboldtforum.org

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