Rethinking Evolution in the Museum

Rethinking Evolution in the Museum

Rethinking Evolution in the Museum explores the ways diverse natural history museum audiences imagine their evolutionary heritage. In particular, the book considers how the meanings constructed by audiences of museum exhibitions are a product of dynamic interplay between museum iconography and powerful images museum visitors bring with them to the museum. In doing so, the book illustrates how the preconceived images held by museum audiences about anthropology, Africa, and the museum itself strongly impact the human origins exhibition experience. Although museological theory has come increasingly to recognize that museum audiences ‘make meaning’ in exhibitions, or make their own complex interpretations of museum exhibitions, few scholars have explicitly asked how. Rethinking Evolution in the Museum, however, provides a rare window into visitor perceptions at four world-class museums—the Natural History Museum and Horniman Museum in London, the National Museums of Kenya in Nairobi and the American Museum of Natural History in New York. Through rigorous and novel mixed methods (quantitative and qualitative) covering nearly 500 museum visitors, this innovative study shows that audiences of human origins exhibitions interpret evolution exhibitions through a profoundly complex convergence of personal, political, intellectual, emotional and cultural interpretive strategies. This book also reveals that natural history museum visitors often respond to museum exhibitions similarly because they use common cultural tools picked up from globalized popular media circulating outside of the museum. One tool of particular interest is the notion that human evolution has proceeded linearly from a bestial African prehistory to a civilized European present. Despite critical growths in anthropological science and museum displays, the outdated Victorian progress motif lingers persistently in popular media and the popular imagination. Rethinking Evolution in the Museum sheds light on our relationship with natural history museums and will be crucial to those people interested in understanding the connection between the visitor, the museum and media culture outside of the museum context.

Download Now

Author
Publisher Routledge
Release Date
ISBN 1134135904
Pages 208 pages
Rating 4/5 (05 users)

More Books:

Rethinking Evolution in the Museum
Language: en
Pages: 208
Authors: Monique Scott
Categories: History
Type: BOOK - Published: 2007-11-19 - Publisher: Routledge

GET EBOOK

Rethinking Evolution in the Museum explores the ways diverse natural history museum audiences imagine their evolutionary heritage. In particular, the book consi
Gender, Sexuality and Museums
Language: en
Pages: 336
Authors: Amy K. Levin
Categories: Art
Type: BOOK - Published: 2010-09-13 - Publisher: Routledge

GET EBOOK

Gender, Sexuality and Museums provides the only repository of key articles, new essays and case studies for the important area of gender and sexuality in museum
Evolution Challenges
Language: en
Pages: 464
Authors: Karl S. Rosengren
Categories: Medical
Type: BOOK - Published: 2012-04-25 - Publisher: OUP USA

GET EBOOK

Evolution Challenges goes beyond the science versus religion debate to ask why evolution is so often rejected as a legitimate scientific fact, focusing on a wid
Museum Making
Language: en
Pages: 360
Authors: Suzanne Macleod
Categories: Social Science
Type: BOOK - Published: 2012-03-15 - Publisher: Routledge

GET EBOOK

Over recent decades, many museums, galleries and historic sites around the world have enjoyed an unprecedented level of large-scale investment in their capital
Museum as Process
Language: en
Pages: 304
Authors: Raymond Silverman
Categories: Social Science
Type: BOOK - Published: 2014-09-19 - Publisher: Routledge

GET EBOOK

The museum has become a vital strategic space for negotiating ownership of and access to knowledges produced in local settings. Museum as Process presents commu
Museums in a Troubled World
Language: en
Pages: 208
Authors: Robert R. Janes
Categories: Art
Type: BOOK - Published: 2009-05-12 - Publisher: Routledge

GET EBOOK

Are Museums Irrelevant? Museums are rarely acknowledged in the global discussion of climate change, environmental degradation, the inevitability of depleted fos
The Role of Today's Museum
Language: en
Pages: 192
Authors: Clive Gray
Categories: Art
Type: BOOK - Published: 2020-04-07 - Publisher: Routledge

GET EBOOK

The Role of Today’s Museum provides a thorough investigation of what museums do and why. Arguing that museums are multifunctional institutions, the book exami
Museums, Equality and Social Justice
Language: en
Pages: 320
Authors: Richard Sandell
Categories: Social Science
Type: BOOK - Published: 2013-05-20 - Publisher: Routledge

GET EBOOK

The last two decades have seen concerns for equality, diversity, social justice and human rights move from the margins of museum thinking and practice, to the c
Museums and Migration
Language: en
Pages: 264
Authors: Laurence Gourievidis
Categories: Social Science
Type: BOOK - Published: 2014-07-25 - Publisher: Routledge

GET EBOOK

Recent decades have seen migration history and issues increasingly featured in museums. Museums and Migration explores the ways in which museum spaces - local,
Museums and Social Activism
Language: en
Pages: 288
Authors: Kylie Message
Categories: Social Science
Type: BOOK - Published: 2013-11-07 - Publisher: Routledge

GET EBOOK

Museums and Social Activism is the first study to bring together historical accounts of the African American and later American Indian civil rights-related soci