University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology
Bearing Witness

Through December 2, 2019

In May 2010, the “Tivoli Incursion,” a standoff between Jamaican security forces and a local drug trafficker and community leader wanted for extradition by the United States government, resulted in the death of at least 75 civilians in West Kingston on the island of Jamaica. This new exhibition—part art installation, part memorial, and part call to action—sheds light on those events through compelling video and audio footage featuring firsthand accounts of people directly impacted by the violence.


Parts of the Museum are currently under renovation, impacting accessibility. For visitors with wheelchairs and strollers, please use the Group (Kress) Entrance for this gallery. To plan your visit, please click here.

In Bearing Witness you will discover:

Fish bones

The personal stories of the people who witnessed the violence.

Underwater Panther Figurine

News clips, interviews and photographs showing aspects of U.S. involvement in Jamaica over time.


A display of the musical traditions integral to the formation of West Kingston.

Photo of Earthwork

Beautiful arrangements representing Jamaican spiritual traditions such as rituals, celebrations, and memorials.

Bearing Witness: Four Days in West Kingston is co-curated by:
Deborah A. Thomas, R. Jean Brownlee Term Professor of Anthropology
Deanne M. Bell, Senior Lecturer Psychology, University of East London
Junior "Gabu" Wedderburn, Musician and Sound Designer, Brooklyn, NY

All photos in the gallery are courtesy of Varun Baker.

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