Badarian culture

249px-112307-BritishMuseum-Badari

Is imperialism really that bad?

Badarian culture is an “Egyptian predynastic cultural phase, first discovered at al-Badari…on the east bank of the Nile (EB).”

The article has a picture of various tools and utensils discovered by archaeologists, with the caption that they are in the British Museum.

As the British explored various parts of their vast empire they brought back thousands of artifacts and kept them in the British Museum.  It is easy now to dismiss the British as nothing more than thieves, but I wonder if they served a valuable role after all.

We see now  the resurgence of iconoclasts in the Middle East who systematically destroy cultural artifacts in the name of Islamic fanaticism.  Is there not a moral good served by taking artifacts out of this region and keeping them in a place without turmoil?

I am reminded also of another thing the British imperialists did.  They imposed a Christian view on India that forbade the burning of widows on their husbands’ funeral pyres.  Was it really so bad to “impose” Western values on those who wished to burn women alive?

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2 thoughts on “Badarian culture

  1. Please can you explain to me what the importance of this statue and Christianity. Don’t forget Christianity starred to get currupted at the begging of the dark ages. As the beloved John the diciple died. All the followers of his would have lost important information. The true shape of the cross etc. Wich was an invention of the Catholic church to bring money into there coffers. Catholics say easter and Christmas is a Christian festival. Look up on Google; is Christmass a Christian festival.? You will be shocked. A true lover of christ would never allow themselves to impose there authority over another nation. It’s not of christ. Are we clear on this fact. It sounded like there was alot of strife, emulations, maybe sedition too. I’m not imputing these sins of the old people of England. It sounds like these things could of happened.
    I fully agree with thE fact some Christians would have been mortified to see a wife want to be burn on top of her dead husband.
    It’s this statue that I find mind boggling thats all. What has it to do with Christianity. God bless you greatly amen…

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    • Thank you for your comment!

      The post is about saving that which was lost. The British saved important cultural artifacts (the Badarian sculpture) and perhaps entire cultures (India). Your point about Christmas is another example of saving that which was lost. The pagan holiday of Saturnalia was a week-long drunken orgy; Christianity took it over and transformed it into something positive, a celebration of the birth of Christ.

      I’m objecting to the common reflex that dismissively condemns Westerners as imperialists. Christianity is fundamentally redemptive, and to the extent that imperial Britain adhered to Christian principles, Britain was redemptive, too.

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