Sunday, April 23, 2017

Museum of Romani Culture

Today's adventure was a visit to the Muzeum romské kultury, Museum of Romani Culture.  Located here in Brno, it the first and only, museum of Romani culture in Central Europe.  It was founded in 1991 and in December 2000 it moved to its current location in the centre of Brno's Roma neighbourhood.

Roma community flag

The museum's permanent exhibit focuses on the life, culture, and history of the Roma, with an emphasis on Czechland from 1945 to 1989.

The Roma are the people that, growing up in the USA, we would call Gypsies.  Cikán is the Czech word for Gypsy.

©Test Tube News

The Roma came from Northern India and came to Europe about 1,000 years ago.  Today, there are about 12 million Roma across Europe but the highest percentages are primarily in Romania, Bulgaria, Hungary, and Slovakia.  In Czech Republic only about 1,96% of the population is Roma.

The Roma face a lot of discrimination no mater where they are.  In communist Czechoslovakia there was a state policy of forced assimilation and there were many counts of sterilisation for Roma women designed to reduce the Roma population.  Some cases of sterilisation were reported up to until 2004.

Here's a video I found out on YouTube that talks about the Roma in Czech Republic.  The interviews are with Romodrom, which is a Czech Republic based Roma advocacy group.

The museum s quite interesting and well worth a visit.  Here's a video about the museum that they put up on YouTube.
©Muzeum romské kultury

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