Saturday, April 04, 2009
this should be in a museum!
As I was finishing Yunus's Creating a World Without Poverty, I remember him dwelling (for a few pages) on the concept of poverty museums. Museums are for remembering - pieces of our culture, pieces of things that make up the history of man. Just as much as that big, golden cross belongs in a museum, argues Yunus, so do the social ills that plague society. On my recent travels in Africa, I've visited three museums - none of which commemorate culture or art.
Kigali Genocide Memorial Center - Kigali, Rwanda
The Hector Pieterson Museum - Orlando West, Soweto, South Africa
Apartheid Museum - Johannesburg, South Africa
Perhaps in creating a beautiful space to commemorate the horrific things we've done to each other, that violence and hatred can be a thing of the past. After reading through the history and seeing the exhibits about Apartheid's creation and demise, I sat down in the veld and realized that there is a piece of me missing. I cannot fathom hatred. This has been bugging me lately - first when I was in Rwanda, and now in South Africa.
I at first thought Yunus's proposition of a "poverty museum" a bit laughable, but I'm coming around on the concept. Surely the phrase "never again" must have a broader breadth than genocide alone.