Museums and Museology
- Module Code:
- Year of study:
- Year 2, Year 3 or Year 4
- Taught in:
- Term 1
Objectives and learning outcomes of the module
At the end of the course, students will have:
- used a range of investigative tools and approaches with which to analyse theory and practice in museums.
- gained theoretical and practical knowledge of the interpretation of a range of museum objects.
- applied key concepts in museological theory to the critical analysis of displays.
- examined some of the key issues and debates in museology.
Scope and syllabus
The syllabus will examine the theoretical and practical approaches to museums via a range of thematic topics:
Week 1: Introduction: museums & museology.
Week 2: Early museums, objects and collections.
Week 3: Museums and displays in the 19th century, and visit to Petrie Museum.
Week 4: Visit to British Museum.
Week 5: Architecture, space & the ‘museum effect’.
Week 6: Art/Artefact.
Week 7: Museums and anthropology.
Week 8: Curating case study.
Week 9: Museums and communities.
Week 10: Universal museums.
Method of assessment
2 assignments of 2,000 worth 40% of final mark (20% each) and an exam worth 60% of final mark
- Appadurai, Arjun (ed.) (1986) The Social Life of Things, Cambridge:
Cambridge University Press
- .Barker, Emma (ed) (1999) Contemporary cultures of display, Yale University Press.
- Baxandall, Michael (1991) ‘Exhibiting intention: some preconditions of the visual display of culturally purposeful objects’, in I. Karp and S Lavine (eds) Exhibiting cultures: the poetics and politics of museum display, Washington DC: Smithsonian Institution Press, pp 33-41.
- Bennett, Tony (1995) The birth of the museum: history, theory, politics, London and New York: Routledge.
- Carbonell, Bettina Messias (ed) (2004) Museum studies: an anthology of contexts, Oxford: Blackwells
- Clifford, James (1997) ‘Museums as Contact Zones’, in Clifford, Routes: Travel and Translation in the Late Twentieth Century. Cambridge Massachusetts and London: Harvard University Press, pp 188-219.
- Duncan, Carol (1995) Civilizing rituals: inside public art museums, London and New York: Routledge
- Fyfe, Gordon and MacDonald, Sharon (eds.) (1996) Theorizing Museums, Oxford: Blackwell.
Giebelhausen, Michaela (2003) The Architecture of the Museum: Symbolic Structures, Urban Contexts. Manchester and New York: Manchester University Press.
- Greenberg, Ferguson and Nairne, Sandy (eds) (1996) Thinking about exhibitions, London and New York: Routledge.
- Hooper-Greenhill, Eilean (1992) Museums and the shaping of knowledge, London and New York: Routledge.
- Karp, Ivan and Steven D Lavine (eds) (1991) Exhibiting cultures: the
poetics and politics of museum display, Washington: Smithsonian Institution
- Kopytoff, Igor (1986 )‘The cultural biography of things: commoditization as
process’, in Appadurai, Arjun (ed.) The Social Life of Things, Cambridge:
Cambridge University Press, pp.64-91.
- MacDonald, Sharon (ed.) (2006) A Companion to Museum Studies, Oxford: Blackwell.
- MacLeod, Suzanne (2013) Museum Architecture: A New Biography, London and New York: Routledge.
- O’Doherty, Brian (1986) Inside the White Cube: The Ideology of the Gallery Space, Berkeley, Los Angeles, London: University of California Press.
- Pearce, Susan (ed) (1994) Interpreting objects & collections, Leicester: Leicester Readers in Museum Studies.
- Peers, Laura and Alison Brown, eds. (2003) Museums and Source Communities: A Routledge Reader. London and New York: Routledge.
- Preziosi, Donald and Farago, Claire (2004) Grasping the world: the idea of the museum, Aldershot: Ashgate.
- Ravelli, L. J. (2006) Museum Texts. Communication Frameworks. London: Routledge.
- Shelton, Anthony (ed) (2001) Collectors: individuals and institutions, and Collectors: expressions of self and other, London: The Horniman Museum and Gardens and Museu Antropológico da Universidade de Coimbra.
- Sherman, Daniel J., and Rogoff, I. (eds) (1994) Museum Culture: Histories, Discourses, Spectacles, Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.
- Vergo, Peter (ed.) (1989) The New Museology, London: Reaktion.