By Elaine Heumann Gurian
Written over a thirty-five 12 months profession, the essays in Civilizing the Museum introduce scholars to the robust, occasionally contested, and infrequently unrealized thought that museums may still welcome all simply because they residence the collective reminiscence of all. Drawing on her adventure operating in and with museums within the US and through the international, writer Elaine Heumann Gurian explores the probabilities for making museums extra crucial and suitable to society. The twenty-two essays are equipped round 5 major issues: * museum definitions* civic accountability and social carrier* architectural areas* exhibitions* spirituality and rationality. And those issues tackle the weather that may make museums extra inclusive comparable to: * exhibition procedure* house configurations* the character of the director* the position of social provider* strength sharing* forms of museums* the necessity for emotion humour and spirituality. with no forsaking the conventional museum strategies, Gurian exhibits how museums can honour culture when embracing the hot. Enriched via her adventure in groundbreaking museums, Gurian has supplied a publication that provokes idea, discussion and motion for college kids and execs within the box to achieve the inclusive power of museums.
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Extra info for Civilizing the Museum: The Collected Writings of Elaine Heumann Gurian
Given the prevailing organizational hierarchy, which has long favored research and curatorial functions over those of public service, it was rare that 15 THE IMPORTANCE OF “AND” educators held positions of power within their own organization. Combining these two advocacy positions (education and women’s rights), Joel established the Task Force on Museum Education and charged the group with producing a policy paper for consideration by the AAM council. The individuals who were asked to participate were high-profile members of the museum education community, representatives of private foundations and government grant-making agencies, and sympathetic directors and deputies of museums.
The big departure for the museum world was that this work was not based on, nor even in some cases referenced to, the central characteristic of traditional museums: collections-based objects. In fact, the Boston Children’s Museum, then more than 50 years old, put all its collections in storage and made what had once been the heart of the presentation off limits to visitors while the staff worked on new active presentation methods. Neither the Barnesdale Junior Art Center nor the Exploratorium had collections.
We no longer believe automatically in the kind teacher, the all-knowing president, the protective policeman, the infallible physician. Fairness means (among other things) teaching the audience to adopt a skeptical approach to “knowledge” and to learn to ask for a second opinion. We owe no less to our visitors. The glories of the machine age and our belief in better lives through technology were founding principles of many science museums, but are now muted by our understanding of the world’s finite resources and the global caring that must prevail if we are to survive.