Different Pasts - Sustainable Futures: Activating Ethnographic Collections at the National Museum of Denmark

Matthew Walsh (Editor), Mille Gabriel (Editor)

Research output: Book/ReportAnthologyResearchpeer-review


In a world where ethnographic collections and institutions are increasingly questioned as lingering vestiges of the colonial gaze, how might we transform them into venues for empowerment and inspiration? Different Pasts – Sustainable Futures navigates this difficult question by reflecting on how the museum can be a place of positive cultural encounters.Ethnographic museums are repositories of culture. As such, they have the potential to be living venues – spaces for the celebration of cultural diversity, resilience, and change. This volume explores how ethnographic and World Culture museums and the research undertaken within them can support the revitalisation of Indigenous and traditional knowledge, lifeways, and ideas through collaboration. It is inspired by the idea that ethnographic collections are redeemable and can contribute significantly to sustainable futures, creative collaboration, and equitable partnerships.Each chapter offers an insightful (sometimes even playful) glimpse into the world of the ethnographic museum with a focus on illuminating how museums and collections can actively contribute to addressing some of the pressing issues of our time.This volume is a contribution to the Taking Care project – a network of ethnographic and World Culture museums across Europe – of which the National Museum of Denmark has been an active partner. It is through research, collaboration, and disseminawtion such as presented in these pages that we might re-envision ethnographic institutions as spaces of care – places where history, hope, and humanity can come together – where different pasts and sustainable futures meet.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationOdense
PublisherSyddansk Universitetsforlag
Number of pages157
ISBN (Print)978-87-408-3508-3
Publication statusPublished - 2023
EventTaking Care - Ethnographic and World Cultures Museums as Spaces of Care.: Workshop: Different Pasts - sustainable futures - Nationalmuseet, København, Denmark
Duration: 14 Sept 202216 Sept 2022


ConferenceTaking Care - Ethnographic and World Cultures Museums as Spaces of Care.

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