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Maasai representative looks at artefact in Pitt Rivers Museum Oxford

Project Opportunity for Young People Based in the UK

Take part in BREATHE! Histories of Colonialism in 3 Objects

Museums are said to be places of fact, where we can learning about history. But whose version of history do they tell? When you step into a museum, whose histories and stories do you see represented in their displays? 

British museums cannot be separated from their origins in the British Empire. The objects museums hold, and the exhibitions that display them, reflect this colonial history and continue harmful and racist narratives. Since international Black Lives Matter protests in 2020, young people have been calling for museums to change and address their colonial histories. The BREATHE! project creates a space for young Europeans to investigate the histories of their local museums and have their say on what needs to change.

About the project

We are looking for 6 young people from the UK to take part in a 10-day workshop that explores the Pitt Rivers Museum’s African collections and asks the vital questions: how did these objects come here? what does it mean that they are here? and what should the future of these objects be?

In BREATHE! Histories of Colonialism in 3 Objects, you will work alongside researchers and curators from the Pitt Rivers Museum to explore these questions and conduct your own research, focusing in particular on 3 key objects in their collections. You will work alongside a film expert to create short films on each object which capture your views and voices on this important issue.

An engraved ivory tusk from Benin in present-day Nigeria.

Who are we looking for?

  • Are you interested in racial justice issues?
  • Do you have something to say about how museums and their colonial histories?
  • Do you enjoy being creative?
  • Do you want to learn how to shoot and edit a film?

If you answered ‘yes’ to one of questions, apply to BREATHE! today! Please note that that in order to take part you must:

  • Be between 18-25 years old
  • Be available to take part in the workshop between Monday 8th – Wednesday 17th August
Group portrait of Maasai representatives and staff at the Pitt Rivers Musuem in Oxford

Apply Now

During the workshop you will stay residentially in the Central Backpackers youth hostel in central Oxford, along with 6 other young people from Vienna, Austria. Your accommodation, transport and meals will be paid for for the duration of the workshop. 

For more information on BREATHE! you can download our recruitment pack here. Apply directly for the project by filling out the application form. 

Closing date for applications: June 28th, 2022.

If you would like to ask any questions about the project and taking part, please email

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