Bones and Mummies
September 12, 2005 7:53 PM   Subscribe

Mexico: The Dark Side. A trip through cemeteries, a visit with mummies and celebrating the Day of the Dead. They visited Italy too - more mummies, plus bones and danse macabre. I was looking for something light hearted to post given all the tragedy as of late and this was what I found instead. [Some of this stuff is pretty disturbing, especially the Mexican mummies.]
posted by caddis (5 comments total)
I've seen the mummies at that museum, and my horror wasn't the appearance of them, but the distasteful displaying and lack of respect for the dead. Thanks for the link, though, I had wondered how the community could do that to their relatives, but I guess the poor get screwed even in death (or ancestors of the currently poor). And the first part of the museum is really, really tacky and offensive (where they have the fetus displayed, the cheesey horror music, the chastity belt, etc. ad naseum). It was fascinating, however, to see what is normally away from our vision. If anyone digs me up after death and puts me on display for gawking tourists, I'll do my best to haunt them!
posted by MightyNez at 8:24 PM on September 12, 2005

I was just there about a month ago and Nez is right - felt like House on The Rock only with mummies. I got some decent pics but haven't had the gumption to post them on Flickr.
posted by KevinSkomsvold at 9:01 PM on September 12, 2005

MightyNez - I've contemplated the tastefulness of displaying the dead when observing Egyptian mummies in museum displays. What's the statute of limitations there? But yeah, what you're describing goes beyond any reasonable idea of respectful display.
posted by blendor at 9:23 PM on September 12, 2005

I feel weird about mummies in proper museums, too. This place just has them stuck in glass cases, and they're certainly not being attended to by people trained in preservation. They're decomposing, shifted, and—Hey look! dead people have genitals, too!
So, my kind of icky feeling when passing King so-and-so of the Nile is nothing compared to the horror of these displays.

That said, I love the Day of the Dead, Halloween (though it's far from it's roots), and O-bon—I like that the dead aren't seen as completely gone and separate from the living.

If these mummies in Guanajuato had been in-your-face-let's-shock-society nudists when alive, I guess I wouldn't feel so icky, except for the fact that they aren't cared for properly, but somehow I doubt that they would be happy about this kind of display.
posted by MightyNez at 9:41 PM on September 12, 2005

check this out!!
posted by Pendragon at 2:20 AM on September 13, 2005

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