Shaping Identity and Preserving Heritage: The Evolution of Caribbean Museums with Mr. Kevin Farmer

Strictly Facts: A Guide to Caribbean History and Culture

May 1 2024 • 58 mins

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Joined by Mr. Kevin Farmer of the Barbados Museum and Historical Society, we explore identity, cultural preservation, and the journey of Caribbean museums from colonial-era institutions to centers that shape national consciousness and safeguard heritage. Mr. Farmer's insights illuminate the evolution of Caribbean museums, spotlighting their crucial role in giving voice to marginalized communities and confronting complex histories within their walls. We capture the essence of a collective awakening, when cultural policies and spaces like the National Art Gallery in Jamaica emerge, nurturing local talent and innovation, as well as national journeys to define identity through cultural institutions. We also tackle global resonance, the repatriation of artifacts, to discuss the wider challenges of decolonizing archaeology. From this episode, gain a richer appreciation for the power of museums in both reflecting and shaping our collective memory and identity.

Kevin Farmer is currently Deputy Director of the Barbados Museum and Historical Society (BMHS). As Deputy Director of the Barbados Museum, he has the responsibility for museum exhibition programming and capital campaign fundraising. He holds a Master’s degree in History (Heritage Studies) from the University of the West Indies, Cave Hill, Barbados, and has lectured in Archaeology at the Department of History at the University of the West Indies, St. Augustine, Trinidad and taught at the UWI Cave Hill in their MA Heritage Studies program.

A member of the Barbados World Heritage Committee, he was site manager for the property Historic Bridgetown and its Garrison, and is currently site manager for the Newton Enslaved Burial Ground. Mr. Farmer is co-editor of the publication entitled:  Pre-colonial and Post-Colonial Contact Archaeology in Barbados (2019); Plantation to Nation: Caribbean Museums and National Identity(2012) along with articles written on cultural resource management, historical ar

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