Museums and memory representations of violence in Colombia, 2000-2014
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This report discusses and analyzes the ways in which some communities remember. Focusing on examples that display violence in museum settings, the main goal of this paper is to illustrate how certain social groups interpret and represent atrocities of their past. Since the decade of 2000, Colombia has seen the emergence of several memory museums that intend to account for the violence of the 1980s and 1990s. These bottom up venues are part of a process of healing and community building that serves the purpose of restoring the social fabric of the peoples affected by brutalities. In contrast, there are the top bottom initiatives, generally undergone by the state, which narrate the past in a different way. This report examines the differences in the stories told by official and non-official museums and the messages both of these venues want to convey. Drawing from sources and secondary bibliography about the National Museum of Colombia and two departmental institutions, The Hall of Never Again, Antioquia, and the Traveling Museum of the Memory of Montes de María, Sucre and Bolívar, this report describes the exhibitions of violence the coordinators of these venues had produced, what are they pursuing, and their intentions.