The editors of NordNytt, the Nordic journal for ethnology and folkloristics, are distributing this call for papers for a thematic issue on “Museums in between art, culture and science”:
Today, many museums are situated somewhere in between art, culture and science. In the late or post-modern societies, the museum institution is being renewed with an eye to improving their communication and research activities. Most museums can no longer be defined and understood within the confines of narrow academic demarcations. Consequently, there is a need to rethink the museum, its audiences and museum studies. The modern museum was defined in the 19th century in close relation to the maturing of science and civil society. With the rethinking of science and society (Nowotny et al, 2001), the modern museum is also in need of critical revision. Most contemporary museums share the desire to work across academic boundaries. Almost by definition, museums of cultural history embrace wider fields than included in the academic curriculum. Other museums, those of art or science for instance, have also begun to add importance to cultural aspects. Parallel to the attempt to strengthen the interdisciplinary approach, the museum is looking to develop new exhibition designs and ways of communication. The museumgoer is invited to explore the exhibition using all of his or hers senses. New media strategies and interactivities offer new possibilities to bridge the “audience gap”, i.e. the gap between the communication strategies of the museums and the experiences/learning of the audiences. The current priority given to interdisciplinarity and interactivity is mirrored by the perceived need to recreate the concept of exhibition and to broaden the public relations of the museum in general. Today, many museums combine classic objectives of general education with experience-driven activities and consumer-oriented interests. In this theme issue of Nord Nytt we want to focus on the trends towards interdisciplinarity and interactivity.
We would like to have contributions that aim to discuss the current and future position of the museum in these respects. If your take an interest in the issues above and would like to contribute to the discussion, please send us your abstract (500 words) no later than May 1st, 2007. Deadline abstract (500 words): May 1, 2007 Deadline articles: August 1, 2007 Theme editors Mette Kia Krabbe Meyer, curator, Steno Museum, e-mail: Carina Serritzlew, curator, Womens’ Museum, e-mail: Kristian Hvidtfelt Nielsen, post. doc., Steno Dept. for Studies of Science and Science Education, e-mail: