Tony Grist (poliphilo) wrote,
Tony Grist
poliphilo

Loot

19th century imperial adventurers did rather think they could help themselves to anything they came across on their travels. Captain Richard Powell, for instance, who fetched up on Rapa-Nui (Easter Island) in 1868, thought he'd like to take one of the Moai home with him as a souvenir. So he did- and gave it to Queen Victoria who gave it to the British Museum. The people of Rapa-Nui would now like their statue back. To us Brits it's just an imposing bit of basalt, to them it's a part of who they are- not just an image of an ancestor but an embodiment of the ancestor. The rights and wrongs are clear. It's stolen goods. It should go back.

There's a petition at change.org. I've signed it.


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