UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Zimbabwe: Protecting heritage and the heritage returned from colonial acquisitveness. Lesson for the Global North

Issued: Mon, 28 Sep 2020 08:51:00 BST

Thu 22 Oct 2020 - 5.00 - 6:30pm BST
On Zoom
Speakers: Tawona Sitholé (UofG), Prof Alison Phipps (UofG) and Stephen Chinhuwo (Great Zimbabw
Join us for an afternoon of discussion around UNESCO World Heritage Site Great Zimbabwe near Masvingo. We will be discussing the relevance of the UNESCO designation for the local community and the ways in which UNESCO’s work and research helps to correct colonial assumptions about important sites and civilizations. We will learn from a site that has been a significant place of guarding and disseminating knowledge of people who are now largely displaced. We also expect to be joined by academic and heritage experts and directors from Zimbabwe.
The ruins of Great Zimbabwe – the capital of the Queen of Sheba, according to an age-old legend – are a unique testimony to the Bantu civilization of the Shona between the 11th and 15th centuries. The city, which covers an area of nearly 80 ha, was an important trading centre and was renowned from the Middle Ages onwards.
Great Zimbabwe National Monument is approximately 30 km from Masvingo and located in the lowveld at an altitude of some 1100 m in a sparsely populated region of the Bantu/Shona people. The property, built between 1100 and 1450 AD, extends over almost 800 ha and is divided into three groups: the Hill Ruins, the Great Enclosure and the Valley Ruins.
The site has been legally protected since 1893 and is currently protected under the National Museum & Monuments Act Chapter 25:11 (1976) which provides for the legal protection of the resources within the property.

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