Stuck in the Colonial Past? Perpetuating Racist, Environmental Myths of Kenya in a Swiss Zoo

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State: Public
Version: Final published version
License: CC BY-NC-ND 4.0
Serval ID
serval:BIB_6F77AD54A5AD
Type
Article: article from journal or magazin.
Collection
Publications
Institution
Title
Stuck in the Colonial Past? Perpetuating Racist, Environmental Myths of Kenya in a Swiss Zoo
Journal
Anthropological Journal of European Cultures
Author(s)
Sithole Samantha, Fernandes Marianna, Hymas Olivier, Sharma Kavita, Walters Gretchen
ISSN
1755-2923
Publication state
Published
Issued date
2021
Peer-reviewed
Oui
Volume
30
Number
2
Pages
95-111
Language
english
Abstract
This contribution challenges representations of landscapes and communities within zoos in Europe that may amplify colonial narratives of local people through a racialised and often static lens. Instead of a holistic portrayal of the relationship between humans and nature that the EAZA (European Association of Zoos and Aquaria) stipulates within its guidelines, some European zoos continue to perpetuate a narrow view of foreign landscapes within their exhibits. Utilising the concept of representation, this short article argues that Zoo
Zürich reinforces colonial narratives through its new Lewa exhibit, an exhibit based on a Kenyan conservancy. This piece is based on an improvised visit to the zoo to see the new African exhibit. It highlights discrepancies between the Lewa exhibit, guidelines of the EAZA and the Lewa Conservancy in Kenya. In this light, we propose recommendations for European zoos to decolonise their institutions and exhibits based on an understanding that is not only scientific, but also historical, critically reflective, and inclusive of non-Western perspectives.
Keywords
Decolonisation, (mis)representation, pseudoscience, zoos, Africa
Open Access
Yes
Create date
14/12/2021 15:54
Last modification date
16/12/2021 7:32
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