ISBN 9783906927312
Pages 134
Dimensions 244 x 170mm
Illustrations Colour Photographs
Published 2021
Publisher Basler Afrika Bibliographien, Namibia
Format Paperback

Sites of Contestation

Encounters with the Ernst and Ruth Dammann Collection in the Archives of the Basler Afrika Bibliographien

edited by Julia Rensing, Lorena Rizzo, Wanda Rutishauser

This book is a collection of essays written by emerging scholars at the University of Basel on the basis of their subjective encounters with a specific archival collection housed in the Basler Afrika Bibliographien in Basel. The Ernst and Ruth Dammann collection consists of around 8100 images, 750 audio recordings and numerous manuscripts, diaries and notes. The German couple conducted research on Namibian oral literatures and languages as they were spoken and performed across the country in the early 1950s. Based on in-depth engagement with the textual, visual and audio records assembled in this intricate collection, the authors of this book critically interrogated the implications of opening a colonial archive, exploring alternative ways of reading and understanding the historical material. As unique examples of close reading and listening, the essays propose creative ways of attending to the politics of race, gender, famine, ethnography, biography and fiction in colonial knowledge production.

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About the Editor

Lorena Rizzo

Lorena Rizzo is a historian and currently a post-doctoral fellow at the Centre for Humanities Research of the University of the Western Cape. She has extensive experience in research and teaching in southern Africa and has published on visual history, gender and colonialism in 20th century Namibia. She is currently working on a project on police photography in Namibia and South Africa.

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