Academic Anthropology and the Museum: Back to the Future (New Directions in Anthropology v. 13)
By: Margaret Bouquet (editor)Paperback
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The museum boom, with its accompanying objectification and politicization of culture, finds its counterpart in the growing interest by social scientists in material culture, much of which is to be found in museums. Not surprisingly, anthropologists in particular are turning their attention again to museums, after decades of neglect, during which fieldwork became the hallmark of modern anthropology - so much so that the "social" and the "material" parted company so radically as to produce a kind of knowledge gap between historical collections and the intellectuals who might have benefitted from working on these material representations of culture. Moreover it was forgotten that museums do not only present the "pastness" of things. A great deal of what goes on in contemporary museums is literally about planning the shape of the future: making culture materialize involves mixing things from the past, taking into account current visions, and knowing that the scenes constructed will shape the perspectives of future generations.
However, the (re-)invention of museum anthropology presents a series of challenges for academic teaching and research, as well as for the work of cultural production in contemporary museums - issues that are explored in this volume.
Mary Bouquet is a member of the Department of Cultural Anthropology, University of Utrecht and has taught anthropology, and organized exhibitions in Portugal, the Netherlands and Norway.
Acknowledgements List of illustrations Introduction: Academic anthropology and the Museum. Back to the Future Mary Bouquet PART I: ANTHROPOLOGICAL ENCOUNTERS WITH THE POST-COLONIAL MUSEUM Chapter 1. The photological apparatus and the desiring machine: Unexpected congruences between the Koninklijk Museum, Tervuren and the Umista Centre, Alert Bay Barbara Saunders Chapter 2. Picturing the museum: photography and the work of mediation in the Third Portuguese Empire Nuno Porto Chapter 3. On the pre-museum history of Baldwin Spencer's collection of Tiwi artifacts Eric Venbrux PART II: ETHNOGRAPHIC MUSEUMS AND ETHNOGRAPHIC MUSEOLOGY 'AT HOME' Chapter 4. Anthropology at home and in the museum: the case of the Musee National des Arts et Traditions Populaires in Paris Martine Segalen Chapter 5. 'Does anthropology need museums?' Teaching ethnographic museology in Portugal, Thirty Years Later Nelia Dias PART III: SCIENCE MUSEUMS AS AN ETHNOGRAPHIC CHALLENGE Chapter 6. Towards an ethnography of museums: science, technology and us Roberto J. Gonzalez, Laura Nader and C. Jay Ou Chapter 7. Behind the Scenes at the Science Museum, London: Knowing, making and using Sharon Macdonald PART IV: ANTHROPOLOGISTS AS CULTURAL PRODUCERS Chapter 8. Unsettling the meaning: critical museology, art and anthropological discourse Anthony Shelton Chapter 9. Inside out: cultural production in the museum and the academy Jeanne Cannizzo Chapter 10. The art of exhibition making as a problem of translation Mary Bouquet PART V: LOOKING AHEAD Chapter 11. Why post-millennial museums will need fuzzy guerrillas Michael M. Ames Notes on contributors Bibliography Index
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