Tuesday 7 December 2010

More Colonialist Cultural Property "Observations" From Washington

Over in Washington, the colonialist antiquity collecting hyenas are greedily eyeing the opportunities for scavenging created by Europe struggling with the effects of global economic crisis. Peter Tompa, Greek Neglect of Major Sites Argues for Less State Control Over Minor Artifacts writes:
Perhaps, countries like Greece should focus on proper funding for major artifacts and forget about "control" over redundant minor artifacts that frankly are likely to be better cared for by collectors.
That's US collectors of course (not forgetting Mr Tompa's firm's clients, the dealers). Poor countries according to Peter Tompa do not deserve to have a heritage. It seems he regards its rightful place is in a Wisconsin collector's home.

Mr Tompa seems to forgetting that the problem with all those masses of archaeological objects on the market which he persists in calling "minor artefacts" is not "who owns" (or "cares for") pieces of the past, but who is digging up those pieces of the past and where. This is the process we all (including US collectors) should be caring about and doing our best to help control. There are those however in whose interest it is NOT to stop freshly dug up material boosting the market - the reader can decide for themselves who they are and why, and for which side Mr Tompa works.

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