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Journal Review on Randolph Starn

March 24, 2016 | Author: | Posted in art, paintings

Historians Brief Guide to New Museum Studies : A Review

Randolph Starn ‘s Historians Guide to New Museum Studies is an in-depth look into new museum studies and the arguments for and against the present changes to modern museums . Present museum practice versus traditional is discussed , along with several museum critics ‘ opinions The following essay is an analysis of Historians Brief Guide to New Museum Studies and the positive and negative aspects of the points made by Randolph Starn

Randolph Starn ‘s Historians Brief Guide to New Museum Studies is an analysis [banner_entry_middle]

of the literature published by critics and museum employees concerning the newer museum studies and the studies ‘ extreme contradictions to traditional museology . In to accurately present modern day arguments , Starn reviews past museum traditions , such as the focus on objects and education for the viewers . The guide is based on four key factors , the first being the genealogy of museums followed by the current shift of status for museum objects . The politics of culture in a museum is discussed as a major factor in museum wars ‘ and finally , the experience of museums both past and future . Critics and curators literature dated as far back as the 1700s is discussed and used as the background for the characteristics of traditional , or old museology . Starn ‘s guide addresses the ongoing debates between popularizers and traditionalists . As the names convey , popularizers concern themselves with popular entertainment , providing exhibitions with modern technology and virtual reality ‘ in to visitors and provide entertainment . Traditionalists on the other hand are more concerned with maintaining the old museology , of providing objects in which to educate visitors and provide bits of history from past cultures and eras . Although most , even traditional , museums make use of some form of technology such as using multimedia and interactive computer stations , the true arguments lie in the values and museum representation

The guide consisted of several good points for and against the concepts of new museum studies . The connections made in the guide were not seen clearly a first . The actual presentation of the information made it difficult to grasp the connections between traditional and new museum study theories . The amount of information needed in to understand each of the arguments was condensed into a small publication causing the reader to be overloaded with concepts and historical data . However , once broken down by subject and reread , the information given was well researched and informative . Starn covered both sides of the four arguments well with the exception of museum genealogy which I felt was a week argument and not well supported . Although the presentation was inadequate the information was interesting and provided an overall understanding of conflicts occurring in the modern day museum

Starn makes excellent points such as the argument over new museum studies dematerializing objects ‘ in to create more of an entertaining quality rather than the tradition ways of focusing on the object itself as an educational experience for the viewer

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