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 While we were Kings and Queen brings together twentieth-century German sources on Enlightenment; the text of a 1712 speech by slaveholder Willy Lynch; and tools recalling the traditional use of nkisi objects as a pledge or vow to banish evil. The series deploys historical materials to draw explicit connections between narratives of colonialism, and contemporary forms of education, resistance and solidarity. In 1712 – the same year that Jean Jacques Rousseau was born – Willy Lynch gave an infamous speech to slave owners in the Colony of Virginia, sharing his methods of oppressing Black slaves. The term ‘lynching’ is derived from his name. The works also show the white Psychosis in which Black and Brown bodies are trapped. A psychosis that on the one hand has promoted emancipation and equality, but on the other hand is responsible for terrible crimes against those bodies.

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