Museums and the Shaping of Knowledge

By Eilean Hooper-Greenhill | Go to book overview

1

What is a museum?

What is a museum? Museums are no longer built in the image of that nationalistic temple of culture, the British Museum. Today, almost anything may turn out to be a museum, and museums can be found in farms, boats, coal mines, warehouses, prisons, castles, or cottages. The experience of going to a museum is often closer to that of going to a theme park or a funfair than that which used to be offered by the austere, glass-case museum.

The last few years have seen a major shifting and reorganisation of museums. Change has been extreme and rapid, and, to many people who loved museums as they were, this change has seemed unprecedented, unexpected, and unacceptable. It has thrown previous assumptions about the nature of museums into disarray. The recent changes have shocked most those who felt that they knew what museums were, how they should be, and what they should be doing.

This fixed view of the identity of museums has sometimes been firmly held and, until recently, little has disturbed it. But it is a mistake to assume that there is only one form of reality for museums, only one fixed mode of operating. Looking back into the history of museums, the realities of museums have changed many times. Museums have always had to modify how they worked, and what they did, according to the context, the plays of power, and the social, economic, and political imperatives that surrounded them. Museums, in common with all other social institutions, serve many masters, and must play many tunes accordingly. Perhaps success can be defined by the ability to balance all the tunes that must be played and still make a sound worth listening to.

At the present time, in many areas where decisions are made about the funding and maintenance of museums, hard questions are now being asked about the justification of museums, about their role in the community, and their functions and potentials. Where the answers are

-1-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Museums and the Shaping of Knowledge
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • List of Plates viii
  • 1 - What Is a Museum? 1
  • 2 - The First Museum of Europe? 23
  • 3 - The Palace of the Princem 47
  • 4 - The Irrational Cabinet 78
  • 5 - The ‘Cabinet of the World’ 105
  • 6 - The Repository of the Royalsociety 133
  • 7 - The Disciplinary Museum 167
  • 8 - A Useful Past for the Present 191
  • Bibliography 216
  • Index 229
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen
/ 232

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.