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Loot Reviews

Loot by Barnaby Phillips

Loot: Britain and the Benin Bronzes

Barnaby Phillips

Score pending

1 review

Category: History, Non-fiction
Imprint: Oneworld Publications
Publisher: Oneworld Publications
Publication date: 1 Apr 2021
ISBN: 9781786079350

A tragic and relevant chapter of British and African history

4 stars out of 5
4 Apr 2021

"The tug of war over where these exquisite sculptures should reside"

hroughout this tortured history, Phillips writes with journalistic detail, gathering his accounts from many sources, attempting fairness. He does not minimise the difficulties that have prevented restitution. But he also notes that the consensus is changing; it’s not just Black Lives Matter and a mention in the Black Panther movie that makes the position of the Benin Bronzes contentious. There is also a sense that a wrong would be righted by their return. There are now plans for a new Benin City museum, designed by David Adjaye, in the hope that the building and the Bronzes it would house can reconnect Africans to the history they have lost.