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Category: Culture

The museum fire that consumed Brazil’s treasures

The tragedy that engulfed the 200-year-old National Museum of Brazil in Rio de Janeiro on Sunday night, turning up to 20 million of its holdings into dust, is an urgent reminder of the need for better safekeeping measures at museums around the world. To put what happened in perspective: It’s as if the entire collection of the British Museum disappeared, twice over, in the blink of an eye.

The fire ignited for unknown reasons. But many Brazilians are blaming their government and some have taken to the streets in protest. After years of declining federal funds, the museum staff had requested urgent maintenance funds from the country’s National Development Bank. In June, the money was disbursed but not in time to install the planned update to the museum’s fire equipment, which lacked a sprinkler system.

Right after the fire erupted, haunting images of panic-stricken museum workers with arms full of museum objects started to circulate on social media and in news outlets. One video showed some of them carrying jars of preserved specimens outside, as firefighters raced back in to save what they could.

More at the NY Times

Also at the BBC

Watch: The Mauritania Railway is the backbone of the Sahara

More at National Geographic

Cultural significance of Bears Ears National Monument

On her recent five-month residency with the Native land’s advocacy group Utah Diné Bikéyah, filmmaker Alisha Anderson shot a series of films about tribal connections to the Bears Ears National Monument. This video features Diné’s spiritual advisor, Jonah Yellowman, speaking about how he connects to nature.

15th Edinburgh Mountain Film Festival will run 3-4 February 2018

The 15th Edinburgh Mountain Film Festival this year will run 3-4 February 2018 at the George Square Lecture Theatre at Edinburgh University.

Along with the selection of mountain and adventure films, this year’s guest speakers include Mark Beaumont, Sarah Outen, Pete Whittaker and Kelly Cordes.

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