Back to the Future: How World War II shaped today’s museums

Pearson, Catherine (2005) Back to the Future: How World War II shaped today’s museums. Museums Journal, 105 (2). pp. 26-29. ISSN 0027-416X

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Over sixty years ago, towards the close of the Second World War, an editorial in the Museums Journal reflected on the effects of the conflict: In the midst of the darkness and brutality of war, museums have seized all available opportunities for spreading the light of learning and culture. Their amazing development during the last twenty years has been tremendously accelerated - not retarded as was first anticipated - by war conditions. (Museums Journal, April 1945, p1) By contrast, the general conception of the wartime museum is now one of decline: the result of the enforced closure of museums, the underground storage of precious objects and the depletion of curatorial staff. So why did contemporaries present such an alternative view and can knowledge of this period be of any relevance to museum policy today?

Item Type: Journal Article
Keywords: Museums, Second World War, WW2
Faculty: ARCHIVED Faculty of Health, Social Care & Education (until September 2018)
Depositing User: Dr Catherine Pearson
Date Deposited: 07 Feb 2018 14:37
Last Modified: 09 Sep 2021 19:03

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