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The Dartmouth
April 18, 2024 | Latest Issue
The Dartmouth
Sabena Allen
The Setonian
Arts

Natives at the Museum: Repatriation and the Reconceptualization in the Museum Space

In 2002, the Hood Museum returned a Tlingit Chilkat shirt to southeast Alaska. The shirt, which was said to have been made before the 1880s, had been in possession of Axel Rasmussen, the superintendent of schools in Wrangell, AK. After his death, it found its way into the possession of a New York City art dealer, and when it was not sold, it was donated to Dartmouth in 1959. 

The Setonian
Arts

Natives at the Museum: Past Imaginaries and Contemporary Realities

Museums originated from Western collectors displaying “artifacts” from other cultures. Indeed, many items in museum collections are there because they were donated by collectors of such “ethnic” artifacts. So, given this early practice of showcasing travels, conquest and wealth, what is the responsibility of the museum today? Do museums have an obligation to educate the public about other cultures and their history?

The Setonian
Arts

Natives at the Museum: Reflecting on colonial spaces through art

Native Americans and museums have historically had a tenuous relationship which is tied to the root of both what museums are meant to do and how much Native “art” over the years has made it into museums. I am by no means an expert, but I will attempt to provide some context on this subject. I am Tlingit, a tribe native to southeastern Alaska. I am Raven moiety from the Ganaxteidi clan. My Tlingit name is Andaxjoon. I am a beginning student of my language, which I have tried to use in this piece, though English grammar has been applied to some of them for the purposes of the article. Some items created by Tlingit people are in possession of the Hood Museum of Art, and thus, I will mostly be using those as examples in this article because they are the items on which I have the most authority to speak.

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