The story is worse than the headline.
Natural History Museum to review potentially ‘offensive’ Charles Darwin collection – The Telegraph
This is not about digging up some problematic racial comments that Charles Darwin made in a latter. Nor is it about the theory of evolution. It’s about the wrongness of scientific expeditions to other parts of the world.
The Natural History Museum will become the latest institution to review it’s collections after an audit warned its Charles Darwin exhibitions could be seen as “offensive”.
An internal review, sanctioned in the wake of the Black Lives Matter protests, has led to an audit into some rooms, statues, and collected items that could potentially cause offence.
It warns that collections which some may find “problematic” could include specimens gathered by Darwin, whose voyage to the Galapagos Island on HMS Beagle was cited by a curator as one of Britain’s many “colonialist scientific expeditions”.
Burying the samples from the HMS Beagle, once held up as a scientific triumph all but buries science. If exploring other parts of the world, even for purely scientific purposes, is colonialism, then much of science, not just archeology, gets tossed in the bin.
But we live in an era in which Nature is appending notes to every paper denying the biological existence of men and women.
An example of the new thinking to address perceived imperial connections to science was a paper penned by a curator and shared with staff, which claimed “science, racism, and colonial power were inherently entwined”.
The work further argues that “museums were put in place to legitimise a racist ideology”, that “covert racism exists in the gaps between the displays”, and as a result collections need to be decolonised.
Burn all the museums and libraries to the ground. It’s the only way to truly end racism.
Legacies that may fall foul of the shift in opinion might be the exotic birds of Darwin and Captain Robert Fitzroy, as their shared journey to South American was “enable greater British control” of the region, according to the paper shared with staff.
The cultural revolution continues.
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