Recovering and Remembering a Slave Route in Central Tanzania

Stephanie Wynne-Jones

in Slavery in Africa

Published by British Academy

Published in print November 2011 | ISBN: 9780197264782
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780191754012 | DOI:

Series: Proceedings of the British Academy

Recovering and Remembering a Slave Route in Central Tanzania

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Tanzania's central caravan route, joining Lake Tanganyika to the East African coast, was an important artery of trade, with traffic peaking in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, and associated particularly with ivory, but also with the export of slaves. The central caravan route has recently been chosen as a focus for the memorialisation of the slave trade in eastern Africa, as part of a project headed by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency in collaboration with the Antiquities Division of Tanzania, and in response to a wider UNESCO-sponsored agenda. Yet the attempt to memorialise slavery along this route brings substantial challenges, both of a practical nature and in the ways that we think about material remains. This chapter explores some of these challenges in the context of existing heritage infrastructure, archaeologies of slavery, and the development of the region for tourism. It highlights the need for a more nuanced archaeology of this route's slave heritage.

Keywords: caravan routes; slave trade; memorialisation; East Africa; slave heritage

Chapter.  7591 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Early Modern History (1500 to 1700)

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