Yup, there is a cute museum at the Great Zimbabwe Monument, no pics I’m afraid, its strictly forbidden.
In the main section are scaled reconstructions of the ruins; history, artefacts found over the years, and then at the far end, a sort of cave with the Zimbabwe bird and the other sculptures found at Great Zimbabwe. Most of them were taken away, some to Germany, others to Capetown, although all but one, have been returned. Each one as a number assigned to it and a description of sorts. I can find no images of them on the internet, and I wish the museum, since they forbid photos, would produce a catalogue for visitors. A curator, who is probably a policeman too, stood at one side, checking we didn’t take any pics, or nick the Zimbabwe Bird.
Since I couldn’t take pics of the real one, I’ve inserted a stone sculpture by Arlington Muzondo; his version of a Zimbabwe Bird!!!! Arlington originally comes from Masvingo area, where he was born in 1974. Who knows, maybe he is descended from the people who carved the stones in the museum.
This sculpture, and about 35 others will be on his exhibition on the 22nd May 2016. Below is a detail of the lovely colours in the stone…
Directly opposite the soapstone display, in the Great Zimbabwe Monument museum, is a glassed display containing several smaller artefacts found at the Ruins. One, an object that looks sort of like a cow, but with lots of openings dotted about on its body. Apparently the spirit medium makes a fire in there and divines depending on how the smoke goes…The curator told us its a very sacred, holy object and that if one should breathe in the fumes when lit, “things wouldn’t go well for you.”
He continued… “And that,” he pointed to a grey stone dildo, about 6 inches tall, “is what older women used to teach young girls…” pointing to a pic of the conical tower added, “It is thought that this is a symbol of male dominance…”
Since I am unable to use the poster of the conical tower in the museum, I’ve put up one of my own. Can you believe the gargantuan effort that went into building THIS? And its just solid stone…it is not functional!
Looking back at the little dildo, and the rather larger one on the wall, I nodded, agreeing with him.
“Yes, I think you are right. Definitely phallic symbols, made by men, to symbolise their dominance. They have to you see.”
Clearly, the guy was puzzled. “They have to?”
“Yes, of course. Women don’t need to go around building huge symbols in a desperate effort to demonstrate their power, they already know they are powerful. You see, women don’t need men.”
Clearly, a rather radical idea such as this, spoken so confidently, had never occurred to him, nor that twenty-four out of twenty-five men are redundant.
He most certainly couldn’t accept that a world run by women (with a few men allowed for fertilisation purposes) could possibly work.
It sure would be a very, very different one to that which we have today.
Would it be a better world? Who knows?