Research Seminar Series: João Sarmento

17 Jan 2014

"Monuments and Memory in São Tomé and Príncipe: Troubling Views on the 'colonial present'"

Department of Spanish, Portuguese and Latin American Studies Research Seminar Series
Following on Nora’s (1989) quest of exploring the links between apparently unconnected ‘sites of memory’, this paper enquires landscape transformations and memory work by engaging in multiple entwined processes that connect places from local to global scales. More specifically it examines the distinct trajectories of a 16th century colonial building which was transformed into a National Museum right after the independence of São Tomé and Príncipe, and a postcolonial monument which was recently demolished as a direct consequence of a large investment by a multinational company. Based on fieldwork on the island, the paper aims at sketching connections between places with a firm view on the colonial present, providing a larger postcolonial critique of contemporary Africa.
João Sarmento is a Senior Researcher at the Center for Geographical Studies, University of Lisbon, Portugal ('Tourism, Culture and Space' Group) and Assistant Professor at the Geography Department, University of Minho, Guimarães, Portugal. His publications include Fortifications, Post-colonialism and Power. Ruins and Imperial Legacies 2011. His website can be found here:
Location: O'Rahilly Building, Room 1.24

Portuguese in UCC


ORB 1.46, First Floor Block B East, O'Rahilly Building, University College Cork