Mamluk Metalwork in West Africa: Material Dialogues during the Age of Empire
A Talk by Raymond Silverman, Professor, History of Art, African Studies and Museum Studies, University of Michigan
The presence of Mamluk Egyptian brass bowls and basins at various sites in central Ghana and northern Nigeria offers compelling evidence for West African participation in global networks of commercial and cultural exchange during the fourteenth century, a particularly vibrant time during which the ancient West African empire of Mali was at its height. This talk addresses a number of fundamental questions these objects raise. How and under what circumstances did they leave Egypt and arrive at the sites at which they are located today? What meaning and impact did they have in the societies that adopted them? What can they tell us about long-distance connections and transcultural trajectories of the fourteenth century?
Sponsored by Moynihan Institute of Global Affairs, Maxwell African Scholars Union, and Department of Anthropology.
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This event was first published on February 4, 2020 and last updated on February 5, 2020.