In 2017, the theme of International Museum Day is “Museums and contested histories: Saying the unspeakable in museums”. In this day and age, It is a rather pertinent topic and here is how ICOM explain why museums are important institutions in our tumultuous world.
History is a vital tool for defining a given people’s identity, and each of us defines ourselves through important and fundamental historic events. Contested histories are unfortunately not isolated traumatic events. These histories, which are often little known or misunderstood, resonate universally, as they concern and affect us all.
Museum collections offer reflections of memories and representations of history. This day will therefore provide an opportunity to show how museums display and depict traumatic memories to encourage visitors to think beyond their own individual experiences.
By focusing on the role of museums as hubs for promoting peaceful relationships between people, this theme highlights how the acceptance of a contested history is the first step in envisioning a shared future under the banner of reconciliation.
Very prehistoric Holiday Wishes to all my readers!
In addition to health, peace and happiness, I hope 2017 will bring you lots of vicarious adventures and wonderful archaeological discoveries (via my website, evidently!)
Thanks to all for reading.
I would like to wish all my readers—family, friends and random strangers!—a wonderful Christmas and a new year filled with great discoveries.
Thank you for following my blog!
The banner photo of me and Khafre in the Cairo Museum has been swapped out for something more recent! You’ll now find an image taken by NCMA photographer Karen Malinofski after the installation of the model of a boat in the Egyptian galleries in the West Building. It will randomly appear up in the banner…
I have been thinking for a while about adding other photos to appear randomly on my site’s image banner. (Just to spruce things up a bit!) In addition to the Predynastic pots from the Petrie Museum, you’ll now see photos of me in action (working on the dig at Dangeil, Sudan) and one of the Meroe pyramids (also in Sudan) during a visit a few years ago (it does not date to my time working there during grad school). There is even one of me in the Cairo Museum about 10 years ago! (I dug that one out of the digital mothballs!) Enjoy!
Taught by my colleague Peter Lacovara, this online course offered by Coursera and Emory University “examines the development of the art and architecture of the cultures of ancient Nubia through what we have learned from archaeology and how that evidence has helped us create the picture we now have of the culture and history of the birth and development of art and civilization in the Nile Valley.”
(I may have had a little something to do with it, too.)
The above description of the course, course syllabus and more information, can be found here. The course starts on April 30.