The Attic (a name which commemorates our first physical location) is, first and foremost, a site for the research students of the School of Museum Studies at the University of Leicester: a virtual community which aims to include all students, be they campus-based and full-time, or distance-learning and overseas. But we welcome contributions from students of museum studies - and allied subject areas - from outside the School and from around the world. Here you will find a lot of serious stuff, like exhibition and research seminar reviews, conference alerts and calls for papers, but there's also some 'fluff'; the things that inspire, distract and keep us going. After all, while we may be dead serious academic types, we're human too.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Narrative Space Coda - Concluding Thoughts and Thanks

Well, that was the conference that was Narrative Space! I've been thrilled to be a part of it, and to be allowed to bring it to you Attic readers. I hope you've enjoyed reading it. There are a few things which I'd like to do, before I sign off completely though.

Firstly, the thanks. To Suzanne, Laura and Johnathan for all their hard work in organising this conference and for selecting such an inspiring selection of papers. Thank you too, to the speakers and delegates who came and contributed so interestingly and well. And thank you too, to the caterers, to the City Rooms for accommodating us and feeding us (yes, even me!) really well.

Special thanks to Barbara, Jim and Bob. They've truly been sterling, and they didn't murder me when I was daft!

Well. The conference has raised a number of questions, of the nature of narrative, the role of space in its unfolding, and the power of people to change and build their independent narratives within that. There have been so many things to think about, so much of use. I'm not sure I've fully absorbed all of it yet, I'm afraid.

But I hope you've enjoyed reading the blog, and I hope that people will comment upon it. I hope that the conference delegates will read this, that the speakers and others will comment, and perhaps some of them would like to do a guest post sometime. I'd hope so.

I've met so many wonderful people, and I hope that we can continue a dialogue well into the future. Because really, one thing the conference has highlighted is that narratives don't have to end. They can continue. So this is thank you, but not good night. Because as Bachelard wrote in The Poetics of Space

'For a house that was final, one that stood in symmetrical relation to the house we were born in, would lead to thoughts – serious, sad thoughts, and not to dreams. It is better to live in a state of impermanence than in one of finality.'

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