Visualisering av tystade historier - En dekolonial kulturanalys av verket I firandet av vår kamp finns deras undergång
Sammanfattning: The dominant narrative of history, prevalent in Sweden, is of a country which has no structural racism and that had no part in the colonization of the Americas or in the transatlantic slave trade. This is far from the truth, and this study connects Sweden’s role in the slave trade and as a country with colonial ambitions, as well as its history of racial biology, with the racialization of non-white bodies. The concept of whiteness in Sweden (as well as the other Nordic countries) is different from other western countries, which is explained with the term “Nordic whiteness”, which makes it even more difficult for people to be regarded as white swedes. The exclusion from whiteness further excludes non-white people from being considered Swedish. Considering that a large portion of the Swedish public are people of colour, or non-white as is the preferred term in the Swedish context, the lack of representation of non-white bodies in public art is palpable. Since our public art and memorials are a human expression of belonging, this study’s aim was to analyse the artwork In the Celebration of Our Struggles Is Their Collapse as a possible memorial for non-white swedes of Latin American and Caribbean decent. By studying the artwork through visual analysis from a decolonial perspective, this study argues that the piece created by Daniela Ortiz works with decolonial themes that speak directly to the history of non-white swedes of Latin American and Caribbean decent. By visually representing non-white bodies in a positive light, focusing on them and their stories, the artwork in question has the potential of upending still existing colonial narratives about non-white people and their histories. I also argue that the artwork connects Swedish history with the colonization of Latin America and the Caribbean, thus un-veiling the multitude of histories that co-exist alongside the dominant history of Sweden. In the Celebration of Our Struggles Is Their Collapse could act as an “anchor point” for the group to remember together, as well as further connecting them to an identity of belonging as swedes.
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