Pasts Beyond Memory
Evolution, Museums, Colonialism
By Tony Bennett
Routledge – 2004 – 256 pages
Series: Museum Meanings
Contributing to current debates on relationships between culture and the social, and the the rapidly changing practices of modern museums as they seek to shed the legacies of both evolutionary conceptions and colonial science, this important new work explores how evolutionary museums developed in the USA, UK, and Australia in the late nineteenth century.
"Sure to be a major intervention in museums and cultural studies…an important and provocative text….I expect this book to be as important as Birth of the Museum, which is saying something." - Ivan Karp, Emory University
Introduction 1. Dead Circuses: Expertise, Exhibition, Government 2. The Archaeological Gaze of the Historical Sciences 3. Reassembling the Museum 4. The Connective Tissue of Civilisation 5. Selective Memory: Racial Recall and Civic Renewal at the American Museum of Natural History 6. Evolutionary Ground Zero: Colonialism and the Fold of Memory 7. Words, Things and Vision: Evolution 'At a Glance' Postscript: Slow Modernism Endnotes References Index