Case Studies

To date, we have identified more than five hundred cases on five continents. Our Case Studies relate to a wide array of historical legacies, including Colonialism, Enslavement, Racism, Fascism, Sectarianism, Anti-Semitism, Communism, Authoritarianism, Sexual Violence and others. To address these often contested legacies, decision-makers and other parties have chosen various Remedies. This can take the form of complete removal of the monument, artistic intervention to alter the statue or increased signage for contextualisation.

Case Studies focus on the historical background, history of the contestation, the decision-making process and the remedy employed. Once our Researchers complete them, the Case Studies are internally reviewed by the Contested Histories Team before being sent out for external expert review by our Academic Committee before publication. They are revised when new developments relating to the case to give the most accurate and up-to-date overview possible.

van Riebeecks wild almond hedge in Cape Town
#139

Van Riebeeck’s Hedge in Cape Town

South Africa

Jan van Riebeeck arrived at Cape of Good Hope in 1652. His mission was to create a station for the Dutch East India Company’s ships. This meant colonising the lands inhabited by the Khoikhoi. To keep… Read More

Van Riebeeck’s Hedge in Cape Town

Jan van Riebeeck arrived at Cape of Good Hope in 1652. His mission was to create a station for the Dutch East India Company’s ships. This meant colonising the lands inhabited by the Khoikhoi. To keep… Read More
Jose Miguel Gomez Monument in La Habana
#281

José Miguel Gómez Statue in La Habana

Cuba

José Miguel Gómez was a celebrated military general who led Cuban forces during the wars of independence against Spain in the 19th century and served as Cuba’s second president between 1909 and 1913. Read More

José Miguel Gómez Statue in La Habana

José Miguel Gómez was a celebrated military general who led Cuban forces during the wars of independence against Spain in the 19th century and served as Cuba’s second president between 1909 and 1913. Read More
Cecil Rhodes Grave in Matobo National Park
#222

Cecil Rhodes Gravesite in Matobo Natural Park

Zimbabwe

In 1902 as requested in his last will and testament, British imperialist Cecil John Rhodes was buried atop a granite hill in Zimbabwe’s world-famous Matobo National Park. Almost 120 years later,… Read More

Cecil Rhodes Gravesite in Matobo Natural Park

In 1902 as requested in his last will and testament, British imperialist Cecil John Rhodes was buried atop a granite hill in Zimbabwe’s world-famous Matobo National Park. Almost 120 years later,… Read More
Jan Pieterszoon Coen Hoorn
#235

Jan Pieterszoon Coen Statue in Hoorn

The Netherlands

Nicknamed the ‘Slaughterer of Banda,’ the figure of Jan Pieterszoon Coen has become increasingly contested in recent years. The statue of Jan Pieterszoon Coen in Hoorn has been a disputed monument sin… Read More

Jan Pieterszoon Coen Statue in Hoorn

Nicknamed the ‘Slaughterer of Banda,’ the figure of Jan Pieterszoon Coen has become increasingly contested in recent years. The statue of Jan Pieterszoon Coen in Hoorn has been a disputed monument sin… Read More
Group of Selk'nam People in Traditional Clothing
#31

Selk’nam Genocide Public Commemoration in Punta Arenas

Chile

The late nineteenth century saw the systematic killing of the Selk’nam indigenous group members at the hands of European settlers in Punta Arenas, Chile. Until 2007, the official state narrative surro… Read More

Selk’nam Genocide Public Commemoration in Punta Arenas

The late nineteenth century saw the systematic killing of the Selk’nam indigenous group members at the hands of European settlers in Punta Arenas, Chile. Until 2007, the official state narrative surro… Read More
Plaque from Minneapolis Park & Recreation for Lake Calhoun Bde Maka Saka
#213

Lake Calhoun in Minneapolis

USA

In 2015, a citizen advisory committee including several Indigenous activists proposed that ‘Lake Calhoun’—christened for John C. Calhoun, antebellum politician, slavery advocate, and proponent of the… Read More

Lake Calhoun in Minneapolis

In 2015, a citizen advisory committee including several Indigenous activists proposed that ‘Lake Calhoun’—christened for John C. Calhoun, antebellum politician, slavery advocate, and proponent of the… Read More
Monument for Theodore Roosevelt on horse with Indigenous People in New York
#186

Theodore Roosevelt Statue at the American Museum of Natural History in New York

USA

On 21 June 2021 plans were confirmed for the removal of the statue of Theodore Roosevelt, which had been standing outside the American Museum of Natural History since 1939. The eventual decision to re… Read More

Theodore Roosevelt Statue at the American Museum of Natural History in New York

On 21 June 2021 plans were confirmed for the removal of the statue of Theodore Roosevelt, which had been standing outside the American Museum of Natural History since 1939. The eventual decision to re… Read More
Isted Lion Statue in Flensburg
#48

Isted Lion in Flensburg

Germany

The Isted Lion, created to commemorate the Danish victory in the 1850 Battle of Isted, has been the subject of German-Danish debates about national and cultural identity in the historically contested… Read More

Isted Lion in Flensburg

The Isted Lion, created to commemorate the Danish victory in the 1850 Battle of Isted, has been the subject of German-Danish debates about national and cultural identity in the historically contested… Read More
Francisco Franco Statue in Melilla
#147

Francisco Franco Statue in Melilla

Spain

The death of Francisco Franco in 1975 brought to close a painful era in Spanish History. In 2007 Spain enacted the Historical Memory Law, which formally condemns the Franco Regime and mandates the rem… Read More

Francisco Franco Statue in Melilla

The death of Francisco Franco in 1975 brought to close a painful era in Spanish History. In 2007 Spain enacted the Historical Memory Law, which formally condemns the Franco Regime and mandates the rem… Read More
#40

Sebastián de Belálcazar Statue in Popayán

Colombia

The statue of Sebastian de Belalcazar, erected in 1940 in Popayan, Colombia, was torn down in September 2020 during a wave of protests. Local indigenous communities had long considered the statue as t… Read More

Sebastián de Belálcazar Statue in Popayán

The statue of Sebastian de Belalcazar, erected in 1940 in Popayan, Colombia, was torn down in September 2020 during a wave of protests. Local indigenous communities had long considered the statue as t… Read More
Statue of Lenin in Bishkek
#93

Lenin Statue in Bishkek

Kyrgyzstan

The Lenin Statue in Bishkek was erected in 1984, during the 60th anniversary of the Kyrgyz Soviet Socialist Republic. Shortly after the fall of communism in 1991, all Lenin statues were taken down. Ho… Read More

Lenin Statue in Bishkek

The Lenin Statue in Bishkek was erected in 1984, during the 60th anniversary of the Kyrgyz Soviet Socialist Republic. Shortly after the fall of communism in 1991, all Lenin statues were taken down. Ho… Read More
Statue of Faidherbe on horse at Lille
#57

Faidherbe Statue in Lille

France

For the bicentenary of the birth of French General Louis Faidherbe in 2018, a protest campaign named ‘Faidherbe Doit Tomber’ (Faidherbe Must Fall) was organised contesting the Monument au Général Faid… Read More

Faidherbe Statue in Lille

For the bicentenary of the birth of French General Louis Faidherbe in 2018, a protest campaign named ‘Faidherbe Doit Tomber’ (Faidherbe Must Fall) was organised contesting the Monument au Général Faid… Read More