The Museal Turnby Douglas Brown
'The Museal Turn' explores the dynamics of contemporary museum culture with regard to its ethics and aesthetics as well as its institutional, social and political frameworks. Aiming at a fuller understanding of both changes in museum culture and shifting interests in it, this collection of talks given at two interdisciplinary conferences held in Salzburg between 2009 and 2010 brings together the voices of practitioners and scholars from Europe, the USA and New Zealand. Grouped into five sections: "Museum Perspectives", "Museum Visiting", "Museum Narratives", "Performing the Museum" and "Museum Practice", 26 papers address the 'museal turn' in terms of the museum's history and cultural diversity, its materiality and mediality, its representation in literature as well as its political and educational agenda. Drawing, inter alia, on debates about consumer cultures, narratology and performance studies, this book reveals the 'museal turn' to negotiate some of present-day culture's most pressing dichotomies: loss and conservation, private and public, self and other, high and popular, individual and collective, learning and entertainment, authority and democracy.
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