Nancy Rushohora | Memories of the German colonialism in Tanzania

Nancy Rushohora CGES
Sponsor(s): Institute of European Studies, Center for German and European Studies, German Historical Institute Washington | Pacific Office Berkeley, Center for African Studies 

This presentation focuses on recent research on secrets and silences on memories of German colonialism in Tanzania, specifically, the area between Rufiji and the Ruvuma River in southern Tanzania. Dated 1880’s and taking over the long-established trade connection with the Asiatic world, establishing the German colonial rule of the region was not easy. The use of violence to bring the Tanzanians to their knees resulted in more than 50 resistances that the Germans were involved in before the establishment of colonial rule. Some of these resistances were major, such as the Majimaji War, which united more than twenty ethnic groups to fight the same foe. In contrast, others were small, such as the coastal resistances but equally violent. The results of these violent encounters were genocidal and have remained in daily local narratives and memories. This presentation delves into the memories of German colonialism in Tanzania to bring to the fore the legacy of German colonialism more than a century after the colonial encounters. What are the evidence and meaning of resistance to colonialism in local narratives and memories of colonial encounters? Moreover, how do all these intersect in the claims of restitution, apology and remedy from the colonial past?



Nancy Rushohora is a Lecturer in the Department of Archaeology and Heritage Studies of the University of Dar es Salaam, University of Exeter honorary research fellow, and a postdoctoral fellow of the Studies in Historical Trauma and Transformation at Stellenbosch University, South Africa.


She is a co-PI of the Imagine the Future through Un/Archived Past. Her research interests include the archaeology of resistance, trauma, heritage, photographs, and memory.


She is currently working on a digital project titled: Transgenerational Memories of the Majimaji War in Tanzania (1904-1908). She is particularly questioning the removal and restitution of human remains from Tanzania to Germany and engaging with the use of the war landscape, museum and memorials.



If you require an accommodation for effective communication (ASL interpreting/CART captioning, alternative media formats, etc.) or information about campus mobility access features in order to fully participate in this event, please contact Ray Savord at or (510) 642-4555 with as much advance notice as possible and at least 7-10 days before the event.

Speaker: Nancy Rushohora, Archaeology and Heritage Studies, University of Dar es Salaam
Moderator: Akasemi Newsome, Associate Director, Institute of European Studies

Ray Savord,, 510-642-4555