Committed to the articulation of big, even risky, ideas in short-format publications, Museums In Focus challenges authors and readers to experiment with, innovate, and press museums and the intellectual frameworks through which we view these. It offers a platform for approaches that radically rethink the relationships between cultural and intellectual dissent and crisis and debates about museums, politics and the broader public sphere.
Museums In Focus is motivated by the intellectual hypothesis that museums are not innately ‘useful’, safe’ or even ‘public’ places, and that recalibrating our thinking about them might benefit from adopting a more radical and oppositional form of logic and approach. Examining this problem requires a level of comfort with (or at least tolerance of) the idea of crisis, dissent, protest and radical thinking, and authors might benefit from considering how cultural and intellectual crisis, regeneration and anxiety have been dealt with in other disciplines and contexts.
Books published in the series are between 30,000 and 50,000 words in length and fully refereed. If you would like to discuss submitting a proposal, please contact the series editor: [email protected].
Further information about Professor Message's work can be found here: https://www.routledge.com/authors/i14753-kylie-message.
Digital Access and Museums as Platforms
Museums and Atlantic Slavery
Museums and Racism
Queering the Museum
By Francesca Lanz
March 05, 2024
Mind Museums offer a fresh perspective on the heritage of mental health, bringing museums into sharp focus by examining former psychiatric asylums that have been converted into museums and exploring their potential in raising awareness and dismantling the stigma surrounding mental health. Drawing ...
By Rebecca Louise-Clarke
November 27, 2023
Museum Representations of Motherhood and the Maternal is the first book to address the underrepresentation of motherhood in museums. Questioning how mothering and maternal experiences should be represented in museums, Louise-Clarke argues that such institutions wield the power to influence what we ...
By J. Pedro Lorente
September 25, 2023
Reflections on Critical Museology: Inside and Outside Museums offers a reflective and reflexive re-assessment of museum studies and the first wide-ranging account of critical museology. Drawing on an extensive range of examples from museums and across the museological literature, which are ...
By Jasmin Pfefferkorn
July 31, 2023
Museums as Assemblage offers a new way of thinking about the dynamism of art museums. Using the concept of assemblage, this book unpacks relations between visitors, artists, museum staff, and the museum’s nonhuman components, providing an analytical framework that celebrates the complexity of ...
By Jason M. Gibson
June 14, 2023
Repatriation of Indigenous Cultural Heritage examines how returned materials - objects, photographs, audio and manuscripts - are being received and reintegrated into the ongoing social and cultural lives of Aboriginal Australians. Combining a critical examination of the making of these collections...
By Caroline Wilson-Barnao
January 09, 2023
Digital Access and Museums as Platforms draws on interviews with museum practitioners, along with a range of case studies from public and private institutions, in order to investigate the tensions and benefits involved in making cultural collections available using digital technologies. Taking a ...
By Ana Lucia Araujo
January 09, 2023
Museums and Atlantic Slavery explores how slavery, the Atlantic slave trade, and enslaved people are represented through words, visual images, artifacts, and audiovisual materials in museums in Europe and the Americas. Divided into four chapters, the book addresses four recurrent themes: wealth ...
By Njabulo Chipangura, Jesmael Mataga
January 09, 2023
Museums as Agents for Social Change is the first comprehensive text to examine museum practice in a decolonised moment, moving beyond known roles of object collection and presentation. Drawing on studies of Mutare museum, a regional museum in Eastern Zimbabwe, this book considers how museums with ...
By Robert Hudson, Shannon Woodcock
April 04, 2022
Self-Determined First Nations Museums and Colonial Contestation explores Indigenous practices of curation, object repatriation, and cross-cultural community engagement in a dynamic Koori museum. Grounded in the fact that Gunai Kurnai people have never ceded sovereignty, the text reorients dominant...
By Kylie Message
March 31, 2021
Racism is a hot topic in museums today, as well as an urgent social issue. Focused on the broad field of multicultural policy, Museums and Racism examines how the Immigration Museum in Melbourne, Australia, has responded to political culture and public debate around racism. Analysis focuses on the ...
By Nikki Sullivan, Craig Middleton
November 14, 2019
Queering the Museum develops a queer analysis of the ways in which museums construct themselves, their core business, and their publics through the, often unconscious, use of inherited ways of knowing and doing. Providing a critique of both the practices and conventions associated with the modern ...
By Adrian Franklin
November 12, 2019
Anti-Museum charts the development of the anti-museum as a concept and as it has been realised in practice. Drawing on a range of case studies, including the New Museum and PS1 in New York, Mona in Australia, Art42 in Paris and Donald Judd’s Marfa, the book assesses their potential to engage museum...