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Imagining Community Through Bereavement: The Institutionalisation Of Traumatic Memory

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Chapter Summary

This chapter investigates three cases of such memorial 'upgrades', namely the Solomon Mahlangu statue in Mamelodi, the Hector Pieterson Memorial in Soweto, and the Sharpeville Human Rights Precinct. It focuses specifically on their visual appearance and the parameters of their aesthetic design, such as their conceptualisation, scale, style, subject matter, iconography, symbolism and materials. The chapter focuses on the new Hector Pieterson memorial and museum and the new Sharpeville Human Rights Precinct, both of which have been referred to in the media as 'shrines of the nation'. It argues that their layout and architectural design were crucially inspired by the idea of communal gatherings and ritualized acts of commemoration. The chapter examines the Hector Pieterson Memorial and Museum in Orlando West, designed by the Johannesburg-based architectural firm Mashabane Rose Associates.

Keywords: Hector Pieterson Memorial; Sharpeville Human Rights Precinct; Solomon Mahlangu statue



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