To celebrate African World Heritage Day 2022, the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, Eduardo Mondlane University (UEM) organized a seminar on African Heritage, as a Source of Humanity, Innovation and Resilience. This was held on 6 May 2022 and focused on the activities and results for different projects funded by the Rising From the Depths (RFtD) Network Plus Programme, and how these are encouraging greater integration of natural and cultural heritage in Mozambique, as illustrated by the recently launched Chongoene Archaeological and Biocultural Heritage Project, Gaza Province, sponsored by the Gerda Henkel Foundation.
The seminar’s objectives were to: i) disseminate the research results and outreach activities undertaken by Mozambique-based lecturers, researchers, and students, especially those at the Department of Archaeology and Anthropology (DAA), while acknowledging the support of national and international partners; ii) demonstrate how marine cultural heritage can be used to benefit coastal communities in Mozambique through the RFtD approach, as exemplified by the Chongoene Archaeological and Biocultural Heritage Park; iii) present proposals for the classification of cultural and natural properties of Mozambique that might be inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage Tentative List; and iv) promote actions and initiatives with youth groups aimed at the preservation of Mozambique’s cultural and natural heritage, being incentivized directly by the African World Heritage Fund.
The seminar was held at the main UEM Campus, attracting 89 participants, with many attending physically and others virtually through a Zoom Meeting platform. The programme was organised around two sessions, each with vibrant presentations from University professors, lectures, students and researchers. The sessions encouraged lively debate and discussions, especially on the development of strategies for safeguarding cultural heritage, as well as on the means for the protection and preservation of the archaeological heritage in different parts of Mozambique.
SUMMARY OF THE SESSIONS- AFRICAN WORLD HERITAGE DAY 2022 CELEBRATIONS AT UEM: THE RISING FROM THE DEPTHS DEBATES
In his presentation, the Head of the Department of Archaeology and Anthropology, Dr Hilário Madiquida, emphasized the visible results of the implementation of the RFtD approaches to Archaeological and Heritage Management in Mozambique. As an example of the impact the programme has had, he noted the number of theses written by students, and academic papers written by lecturers and students dealing with this approach. He gave the example of the Chongoene Archaeological and Biocultural Heritage project as an important outcome of the RFtD. It demonstrates how the marine heritage can benefit local communities living in the coast. The project joins a team of researchers from EMU, UniSave, Pedagogical University and Cambridge University, being coordinated by Dr Solange Macamo and advised by Professor Paul Lane. He also acknowledged the contributions of the biocultural heritage approach being promoted by the Sida-funded research and training program linking UEM and Uppsala University (Sweden) that he coordinates.
The Dean of the Faculty, Dr Samuel Quive, thanked Dr Jon Henderson for involving Mozambican researchers and students in the RFtD network and the opportunities this had given them to run their own projects, and for the good results that have been presented from last year, when African World Heritage Day started to be celebrated in Mozambique at UEM. He also thanked Dr Henderson for availing funding for the seminar. He welcomed the Park project as the result of RftD activities in Mozambique and funding received from the Gerda Henkel Foundation for helping to establish it, while also recognizing the valuable support to heritage initiatives provided by local communities and other international partners.
Key observations from the presentations
Énio Tembe made a key point in his paper on food and diet on the southern Mozambique coast: developing business and intangible heritage about the need to present Chongoene’s heritage in a way that is in line with community needs. The paper was very much appreciated during the seminar, since it placed value on local culinary practices as an important intangible heritage that can be used to stimulate local business activity, in this way helping sustain the Park. Another key paper, presented by a group of students from UEM, outlined a new system for grading the built heritage of Inhambane province, especially that found in coastal towns. This system defines compatible uses for different types of buildings and how these can serve the needs of local coastal communities. This is well in line with the RFtD approach.
Student presentation of the grade system and uses of the built heritage in Inhambane. Photo: Faculty Communication and Image Office, UEM.There was also a very interesting paper by Dr Zacarias Ombe (PI for RFtD-funded project Embracing social learning in the management of ecosystem services in Chongoene District, Gaza Province, Mozambique). He demonstrated clearly how coastal people are benefiting freely from ecosystem services, both in terms of intangible belief systems, including the use of plants for medicine, and also economically since the access to the diversity of coastal ecological resources can provide income generating activities, such as fishing, and materials for housing and energy production. Another very interesting paper, using the RFtD approach came from our department colleague, Dr Esmeralda Mariano who is Associate Professor of Anthropology. Her paper was about “local perceptions of marine cultural and natural heritage in Ibo Island”, located in Cape Delgado Province.
In her paper, written with Paul Lane, Hamido Atuia, Pedro Moiane and Açucena Nhamtumbo (a final-year BA student), Solange Macamo outlined the main achievements of the Chongoene Archaeology and Biocultural heritage project. These have included the i) signing of a Cooperation Agreement by Eduardo Mondlane Rector together with the Xai-Xai Mayor and the Chongoene District Administration; ii) the development of proposal for zoning the park into five zones (archaeological, ecological, touristic, indirect zone of influence of the Park of the old Beach of Xai-Xai and a buffer zone), where the community activities related to the use of ecosystem services are considered; iii)the compilation of protective biocultural legislation; iv) the design of a road layout for the Park and protective signage, using the biocultural legislation and the knowledge of the archaeology as guiding principles; v) the planning of the administration and legal procedures for the architectural design and construction of the Heritage Visitor Centre and Security Cabin; and vi) further funding applications to ensure an Archaeological and Biocultural Heritage Park of excellence that will serve primarily the needs of coastal communities in Chongoene and Xai-Xai Districts.
Finally, we had Dr Wesley Forsythe presented the results of his RFtD project in northern Mozambique related to marine cultural heritage, along with Yolanda Duarte who spoke about the activities of the Mozambique Island Archaeological and Resources Centre, for which Dr Solange Macamo has now been appointed Director, responding also for the Faculty Museum of Archaeology, within the university. Dr Macamo will continue working with Dr Ricardo Duarte, coordinating also with local stakeholders and collaborating with local and international partners.
During the closing ceremony, the program coordinator thanked all the committee members who helped to organize the seminar and the participants, and the UEM support staff for the facilities and technical logistics. The Deputy Dean of the Faculty thanked all participants, in particular the Inhambane and Gaza province heritage representatives, for coming. He also thanked all paper contributors and the moderators, for providing interesting discussions centered on research and community outreach at the University research outreach. He appreciated the involvement of the students in this process and recommended the extension of MA training particularly in marine heritage at the University.
Order of presentations
|Theme followed by debate||Speaker||Moderator|
|Tribute to Dr João Carlos de Senna Martinez||Dr Solange Macamo & Dr Ana Martins|
|Classification of the built heritage of Inhambane Province||Arminda Guambe, Aventina Sitoe, Celeste Mandlazi, Jennifer Chambule, Margarida Ernesto & Profina Mondlane||Dr Solange Macamo|
|Methodology for laboratory-based archaeological research applied to the Chongoene shell middens in Gaza Province, Mozambique||Altino Munguambe||Dr Mussa Raja|
|Archaeotourism in the National Park of Maputo, Maputo Province||Silva Mazuze||Otília Ngoveni|
|Youth initiatives for the conservation of the cultural and natural heritage in Mozambique||Chafim Braga||Dr Hilário Madiquida|
|Local perceptions about cultural and natural heritage on Ibo Island, Cabo Delgado Province||Dr Esmeralda Mariano||Yolanda Duarte|
|The Rising from the Depths-funded project: Embracing social learning in the management of ecosystem services in Chongoene District, Gaza Province, Mozambique||Dr Zacarias Ombe||Dr Mussa Raja|
|The Chongoene Archaeological and Biocultural Heritage Park in Gaza Province, Mozambique: a proposal for zone mapping and protective signage||Dr Solange Macamo, Professor Paul Lane, Hamido Atuia, Pedro Moiane & Açucena Nhantumbo||Dr Zacarias Ombe|
|Food and diets on the southern coast of Mozambique: Developing intangible heritage and business for the Archaeological and Biocultural Heritage Park, in Gaza Province, Mozambique||Énio Tembe & Sidónio Matusse||Jossias Humbane|
|Terms of reference for archaeo-touristic management of interpretative centres at the Manyikeni and Chibuene archaeological sites, Vilankulo, Inhambane Province, in the context of sustainable management.||Silva Mazuze||Dr Solange Macamo/Jossias Humbane|
|The Rising from the Depths-funded project: Marine cultural heritage in northern Mozambique. Presenting CAIRIM- Centre for Archaeology, Research and Resources of the Island of Mozambique & exhibition||Dr Wes Forsythe & Dr Ricardo T. Duarte/Yolanda Duarte|
|DIRECTOR OF CEREMONIES: Dr Mussa Raja – DAA
- Coordination- Solange Macamo, Énio Tembe, Sidónio Matusse, Silva Mazuze, Altino Munguambe, Arminda Guambe & Jennifer Chambule.
- Protocol– Énio Tembe, Sidónio Matusse, Télvia Machava & Celeste Mandlaze
- Secretariat- Arti Chandra, Hamido Atuia, Stela Gujamo, Clara Mendes, Judite Nhanombe, Braimo Ussene & Milton Chirindza
Before the seminar, we were encouraged by the Rector to publish two-page summaries of all the papers presented in the University Scientific Journal.
Text edited by Solange Macamo & Paul Lane
Layout by Sidónio Matusse
To all who generously provided the complementary data necessary for the edited report.
Maritime Cultural Landscape logo provided courtesy of the University of Coimbra.