This important book deals with key issues affecting all history museums, taking as a starting point the interpretation by museums of World War II. The essays it contains are based on a conference held by the National Museums of Denmark, at which leading international museum professionals were invited to speak, including representatives of: the Imperial War Museum; Museum of the Danish Resistance; Musée Royal de l’Armée, Bruxelles; Museum of Occupations, Tallinn; and the Canadian War Museum, Ottawa.
The essays in this 400-plus page publication explore how history museums can – and are – helping to explain and interpret the thinking of past generations, as well as their material culture. Among the many key issues the contributors address are: 1 How best can abstractions like cause, effect and other ideas be interpreted through objects? 2 Just how is the role of objects within museums changing? 3 How should we respond when increasingly visitors no longer accept the curator’s choice of objects and their interpretation? 4 How can museums deal effectively with controversial historical issues?