Contemporary Collecting: Objects, Practices, and the Fate of Things

Contemporary Collecting: Objects, Practices, and the Fate of Things

by Kevin M. Moist
     
 

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In Contemporary Collecting: Objects, Practices, and the Fate of Things, Kevin M. Moist and David Banash have assembled several essays that examine collecting practices on both a personal and professional level. These essays situate collectors and collections in a contemporary context and also show how our changing world finds new meaning in the legacy of older

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Overview

In Contemporary Collecting: Objects, Practices, and the Fate of Things, Kevin M. Moist and David Banash have assembled several essays that examine collecting practices on both a personal and professional level. These essays situate collectors and collections in a contemporary context and also show how our changing world finds new meaning in the legacy of older collections. Arranged by such themes as “Collecting in a Virtual World,” “Changing Relationships with Things,” “Collecting and Identity—Personal and Political,” and “Collecting Practices and Cultural Hierarchies,” these essays help illuminate the role of objects in our lives.

Editorial Reviews

CHOICE
In editors Moist and Banash's volume on collecting, philosopher Stanley Cavell writes that "collecting for possession and display is as primitive as gathering food for survival." The contributors assess the growing significance of different impulses, forms, and manifestations of collecting as a cultural practice through a series of 13 provocative essays. Cavell's foundational treatment examines different collection guises from Homer to Walter Benjamin. In the section "Collecting in a Virtual World," the subject is things that occur in memory, ephemera, and cyberspace, such as 1960s provincial children's television. Banash's essay explores changing relationships to possessions in a post-material world, the reclamation of Pez dispensers (a candy-toy combination), and William King's meditation on a collection of nothing (cast-off secondhand items). The collecting and identity section visits baseball memorabilia that moves from a private collection to a stadium, Nazi cigarette cards (popular tales of Hitler avidly sought by German youth), and the Victorian women's collections that helped create a national narrative. A final section on collecting and hierarchy suggests a cultural anthropology accomplished through record collecting, Alex Jordan Jr.'s unintentionally comedic House on the Rock collections, and the evolution of curiosity cabinets into modern museums. Summing Up: Recommended. All readership levels.
American Reference Books Annual
The idea of collecting as a reflection of historical and cultural development is examined in a series of scholarly essays written by various authors, differing from the usual price guides and how-to sources on collecting. An introduction gives an overview of the types and techniques of collections and collecting, as well as the arrangement of the essays. The 12 new essays and one reprinted essay are grouped into four basic themes: collecting in a virtual world, relationships between collector and their collections, collecting as a reflection of identity (both personal and political), and how collecting practices relate to cultural development. The essay topics range from whimsical to sobering (i.e., from toys to Nazi propaganda), from the curiosity cabinets of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries to the more modern MP3 files. Each essay is followed by a bibliography and some are enhanced with illustrations. There is an index and information about the essay contributors at the end. This is an interesting examination of collections and collecting that would serve as a beginning place for scholarly research.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780810891135
Publisher:
Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
Publication date:
05/16/2013
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
304
Product dimensions:
6.30(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.00(d)

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