Telling a Story of Two Lands: Perspectives on Ancient Kush, Egypt, and Africa | July 2023 (127.3)



An ambitious exhibition at the Musée du Louvre, Pharaon des Deux Terres: L’épopée africaine des rois de Napata, presented a history of the kings of Napata who conquered Egypt and ruled there as its 25th Dynasty (ca. 720-664 BCE). This dynasty ruled over an empire properly known as Kush, centered in northern Sudan. While acknowledging the challenging circumstances through which the exhibit was developed, this review questions the vestiges of colonialism that shaped it. In particular, it criticizes the presentation of Kushites as important only insofar as they interacted with Egypt. It also questions absences in the exhibit: perspectives from heritage communities on the significance of Kush, or engagement (beyond the title) with its African setting.

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