AbstractThis episode takes a look at the history of monuments and examines some of the issues surrounding monuments today. It considers the history of the Robert E Lee monument Richmond Virginia, its signification in relation to the history of equestrian sculptures and considers its role now. The removal of confederate statues in the American South is part of a worldwide movement to confront the violent legacy of colonialism, the trans-Atlantic slave trade, the attempted genocide of Indigenous people, and other atrocities committed by Europeans and settlers. In the wake of the #blm movement and the Calls to Action from the Truth and Reconciliation of Canada, this episode asks: what should we do with these monuments now? Dr. Steer examines several options and their implications, such as putting the monuments in a museum or park, contextualizing them, creating new monuments and new works of art, destroying the monuments, or leaving them as is.
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