A decolonial walking tour of the Afrikanische Viertel in Berlin-Wedding for students of the Hertie School was organised by the Student Advisory Board for the Centre for Fundamental Rights.
On September 24, the Student Advisory Board for the Centre for Fundamental Rights organised a walking tour of the Afrikanische Viertel in Berlin-Wedding for students of the Hertie School to better understand Germany’s colonial past and the legacy it had left on both the African continent and the city itself. During and after the tour, the participants had the privilege to engage in and overhear thoughtful conversations on topics of racism, colonialism, and fundamental rights.
The Afrikanische Viertel is a neighbourhood of approximately 20 streets, where the street and place names (Togo Strasse, Windhuker Strasse, Kolonie Klein Afrika) reflect and memorialise Germany’s pride as a burgeoning colonial power in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Over the course of a two hour walk through the neighbourhood, students learned how human zoos functioned, how “protection contracts” were used to seize native lands, how Otto von Bismark and other European statesmen divided the continent during the Berlin Conference (Congo Congress), how racism enabled and justified these crimes, and how the echoes of this injustice linger in the city to this day.
“Yesterday I was very impressed with the history; it was new information and produced personal reflections about the shared and common process between different continents. In my case, I come from Latin America. It was an excellent initiative. Thanks for the opportunity." said one of the participants Ximena Docarmo.