Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Collecting Antiquities: The Missing Contributions

I have been reading the conference announcement for "Museums and the Collecting of Antiquities: Past, Present and Future" (May 4, 2006) (available on the AAMD website). The purpose of the conference was twofold:
• To present an overview of the contribution art museums have made to the preservation and understanding of ancient art and culture through the collecting of antiquities, and how this mission can responsibly be continued; and
• To present panel discussions among relevant experts from within and outside the museum profession on the role of collecting in the continuing research on, and appreciation of, ancient art and culture. Panelists will include archaeologists, museum directors, curators, and other scholars.
James Cuno's Whose Culture? (p. ix) tells us this conference has led to this edited volume:
The discussion that day made it clear that a book was needed that would present the point of view of museum directors, curators, and university-based scholars regarding the value of the museum in the context of the current debate over the acquisition of antiquities. That is that book.
But if so, where are essays by the following scholars?
  • Michael Barry, Lecturer in Persian, Princeton University and Curator of Islamic Art, The Metropolitan Museum of Art
  • Malcolm Bell, Professor of Art History, University of Virginia
  • Glen Bowersock, Professor of Ancient History, Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton, NJ
  • Michael Coe, Professor of Anthropology Emeritus and former Curator of the Peabody Museum of Natural History at Yale University
  • David Freidel, University Distinguished Professor of Anthropology, Southern Methodist University
  • Patty Gerstenblith, Professor of Law, DePaul University
  • Richard Leventhal, Director, University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology
  • Jane Waldbaum, President, Archaeological Institute of America and Professor Emerita of Art History at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
Yet four of the essays in Whose Culture? are reprint articles. Why? Were the above contributors unable to submit an essay? What would, say, Malcolm Bell, Patty Gerstenblith, Richard Levanthal, or Jane Waldbaum have to say on these issues?

Or is there another reason why their essays do not appear here?

No comments:

LinkWithin

Related Posts with Thumbnails