"The people's museum should be much more than a house of specimens in glass cases. It should be a house full of ideas..." G.B. Goode, Director of US National Museum, 1891
"Organizing the past, in accordance with the needs of the present, that is what one could call the social function of history." Lucien Febvre
This course is designed as an introduction to the histories, types, functions, and meanings of museums, focused particularly on the art museum. Through reading, discussion, lectures, and field trips, we will consider the varieties of museums: their collections, structures, displays, and contexts. As befits its status, this course will be taught as a combination of a lecture and seminar class. It will accommodate a variety of different contributions and has much room to be tailored to individual student interests.