CFP: Making National Museums: Comparing institutional arrangements, narrative scope and cultural integration (NaMu)

From H-Museum:

Making National Museums: Comparing institutional arrangements, narrative scope and cultural integration (NaMu)


Linköping University, Sweden
26-28 February 2007

End of call date: 1 December 2006

This three-day conference is the first in a series bringing together PhD students and senior scholars. Application for participation is open for all disciplines doing research on the historical and contemporary dynamics around National Museums. The program and series is presented on

SETTING THE FRAMES is part of the program Making National Museums:
Comparing institutional arrangements, narrative scope and cultural integration (NaMu), funded by Marie Curie Conferences and Training Courses.

The Marie Curie Conferences & Training Courses are one of the four so-called Host-driven actions aimed at supporting research networks, research organisations and enterprises. The specific objective is to bring together researchers with a different level of experience.
The NaMu-program will form a new departure for understanding and working with the European diversity in the museum institution by bringing the multidisciplinary field of museum and heritage studies together with a sharp and comparative focus on national museums. The purpose of the program is to develop the tools, concepts and organisational resources necessary for training researchers, investigating and comparing the major public structure of National Museums, responding to challenges of globalisation, European integration, and new media. This will be achieved by a series of conferences providing a venue for younger scholars and eminent researcher from Europe to gather and develop the multi-disciplinary competence necessary to understand and compare the dynamics of national museums in a framework for broader historical culture and identity politics. The full program of six consecutive workshops is presented on the website

The first conference is working under the heading "Setting the Frames", denoting the work of refining the comparative scheme that is presented below. Cultural, archaeological, art, natural and technological museums might be part of forming a national museum in each country. Suggestions for papers should relate to the comparative design but might deal with a variety of empirical questions such as:

< How can we understand and define the national museum concept? How has the concept been understood and defined by different actors in the past? What historical, political and cultural contexts are relevant to the creation of national museums?

< How are politicians, the public sphere, university disciplines and civil society negotiating the concept of National Museum in different nations?
Different groups of actors and users might stand for different defining processes through both intentions and practices.
What historical changes can be identified? How can their role in the broader historical culture be assessed?

< How could the creation of and narration within National Museums be read as performative acts, text, visual and architectural statements and discourses?

Among the keynote speakers are professors Tony Bennett and Stefan Berger.
More information on the website, and
Send application by registering at and submit an abstract of 1-3 pages to before 1 December 2006. Admittance will be decided before 20 December 2006.
Grants for participating will cover travel costs and accommodation at the conference.


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