Contested Property: Affect and Emotion in Transcultural Normative Conflicts about Ethnographic Collections in the Humboldt Forum

Calabash, house of the religious specialist Abdallah Said Mkundi, Mohoro

Calabash, house of the religious specialist Abdallah Said Mkundi, Mohoro
Image Credit: Lili Reyels (2016)

Head of project

Staff members





Contested Property: Affect and Emotion in Transcultural Normative Conflicts about Ethnographic Collections in the Humboldt Forum.

The status of ethnographic collections in Germany has become the subject of a heated debate, with the question of property at its core. The affective and emotional dimension of such conflicts about property, in which not only different stakeholders but also different concepts of property compete with each other, is at the center of this project. Focusing on the Tanzania-collection of the Ethnologisches Museum Berlin in the Humboldt Forum, the project members explore through multi-sited fieldwork in Germany and Tanzania how property concepts are institutionally transformed in the course of such conflicts. The overall goal is to come to a fuller understanding of the role of affect and emotion in such processes of socio-legal transformation.