Symposium: Curiouser and Curiouser
Challenging Convention and Celebrating the Unusual in Museums and Heritage,
University of Leicester,
28/29/30 March, 2011.
Definitions of what is acceptable within museums and collections are changing, catalysed by the blurring of boundaries once enforced by such factors as national identity, ethnicity, socio-economic position and public and personal ideologies. Is what was once considered bizarre or strange becoming more mainstream? What exactly is meant by ‘curious’ or ‘eccentric’, and need such words have pejorative connotations?
Building upon the success of our last conference, Materiality and Intangibility: Contested Zones, which took place in December 2009, the PhD community in the School of Museum Studies at the University of Leicester has set up Curiouser and Curiouser with the intention of exploring these ideas and challenging conventional perceptions of cultural institutions and the roles which they play in contemporary society.
The School of Museum Studies at Leicester is a leading and internationally renowned centre for the subject, and has been training museological practitioners and theorists since 1966. The School works with museums, galleries and related cultural organisations internationally to develop creative practice through cutting-edge teaching and research.
Curiouser and Curiouser (28/29/30 March, 2011) sets out to deconstruct notions of normality and eccentricity in museums and heritage institutions. What exactly is normal, and what is idiosyncratic?