(Re)Visualizing National History: Museums and National Identities in Europe in the New Millennium
Ideas regarding the role of the museum have become increasingly contentious. In the last fifteen years, scholars have pointed to ways in which states (especially imperialist states) use museums to showcase looted artefacts, to document their geographic expansion, to present themselves as the guardians of national treasure, and to educate citizens and subjects. At the same time, a great deal of attention has been paid to reshaping national histories and values in the wake of the collapse of the Communist bloc and the emergence of the European Union. (Re)Visualizing National History considers the wave of monument and museum building in Europe as part of an attempt to forge consensus in politically unified but deeply divided nations.
This collection explores ways in which museums exhibit emerging national values and how the establishment of these new museums (and new exhibits in older museums) reflects the search for a consensus among different generational groups in Europe and North America. The contributors come from a variety of countries and academic backgrounds, and speak from such varied perspectives as cultural studies, history, anthropology, sociology, and museum studies. (Re)Visualizing National History is a unique and interdisciplinary volume that offers insights on the dilemmas of present-day European culture, manifestations of nationalism in Europe, and the debates surrounding museums as sites for the representation of politics and history.
- Series: German and European Studies
- World Rights
- Page Count: 240 pages
- Dimensions: 6.1in x 0.7in x 9.0in
Reviews‘An important contribution to literature dealing with the missions and challenges facing contemporary museums in a postmodern world.’
‘(Re)Visualizing National History explores the place of museums and their efforts to represent significant aspects of late twentieth-century projects of national identification. The contributors examine a range of European societies where the relation between visual historical materials and national narratives is troubled, and discuss the influence of external factors such as emigration on national projects. Multi-disciplinary and thematically coherent, this is a significant contribution to Museum and Cultural Studies.’
John Borneman, Anthropology Department, Princeton University
Author InformationRobin Ostow is a resident fellow at the Centre for European, Russian and Eurasian Studies at the University of Toronto.
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