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Call for Papers -”Museum and Society” Journal (Department of Museum Studies, University of Leicester, UK)



Museum & Society invites those using sociological approaches to understanding museums or museum-related topics to submit papers to a special issue of the journal. The editors are keen to develop further the sociological scope of the journal, and wish to encourage work and publish articles covering a wide range of social science, humanities and practitioner research, under the following general headings:

1. Papers that report new theoretically-engaged, empirically-grounded research on museums. Amongst potential areas of special interest are:

  • Social elites, power and museums
  • Corporate sponsorship
  • The public sphere and the notions of publics
  • Museums, architecture, space and the built environment
  • Museums, identity and difference (e.g. class, age, gender and/or ethnicity)
  • Sociology of knowledge, art, science
  • Nature and Society
  • Political-economy of Museums
  • Museums and Religion
  • Museums and national cultural trends
  • Historical sociology of museums/collections
  • Government policy and museums
  • Out-door museums including zoos, national parks and gardens.

2. Papers that report on museum-related topics such as collecting, socio-cultural trends, cultural policy, social memory, time, heritage and tourism but where the main theme may not be museums. Such papers would seek to broaden the field of inquiry by drawing attention to the ways in which museums are implicated/imbricated by broader social forces.

3. Papers that focus on how museum research has been informed by key sociological concepts, e.g. social class, cultural capital, globalization, post-colonialism, post-modernism, or methods/approaches, such as ethnography, STS, Actor-Network Theory or Visual Methods. Such papers might, for example, show how museum research provides a critical extension of the concept(s) or approaches under review.

4. Papers that deal critically with social theorists whose ideas have influenced museum studies in recent years and which assess their contributions to the field.

5. Papers that explore the role of the sociological imagination within museums (exhibitions and displays) and the impact of sociology on museum practice.

Museum and Society is an interdisciplinary peer reviewed journal with a wide ranging interest in all issues associated with museums and other places of public culture concerned with collecting, exhibiting and display. It’s published on-line by the Department of Museum Studies of the University of Leicester.


“Bridge Over Troubled Waters? The Link Between European Historical Heritage and the Future of European Integration” (17 October 2014 | National Research Council, Rome)

Under the purpose of engaging on interesting discussions around the Social Sciences and Humanities, the Reflective Societies Unit of the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Research and Innovation, in cooperation with FLASH-IT and APRE, has organised the workshop “Bridge Over troubled Waters? The Link Between European Historical Heritage and the Future of European Integration”, which will take place in Rome on 17th October.

This workshop revolves around the problematic of the interconnectedness of the past, present and the future in the current European societies. It aimes at initiating a discussion about the potential meaning of “reflective societies” as societal challenge for current European societies in general and for setting the European research agenda under Horizon 2020 in particular. » Read more

Different Photographic and Thematic “Views on Africa” ( 20 September – 19 October | Kunsträume der Michael Horbach Stiftung, Köln)

©Photos by Thomas Dorn, Jan Grarup, Per-Anders Pettersson, Peter Bialobrzeski, Obie Oberholzer  and Christian Lutz.

On the occasion of the renown imaging fair Photokina and during the Cologne Photoszene Festival, the Cologne-based leading photo agency laif Agentur für Photos & Reportagen has exhibited the works of six photographers, offering different thematic and photographic perspectives on “Africa”. The exhibition is displayed in the Art Spaces of the Michael Horbach Foundation from 20th September to 19th October 2014.

The includes works by: Per-Anders Pettersson (“Rainbow Transit”), Jan Grarup (“Somalia”), Christian Lutz (“Tropical Gift”), Obie Oberholzer (Long Distance”), Peter Bialobrzeski (“Informal Arrangements”) and Thomas Dorn (“Houn-Noukoun – Gesichter und Rhythmen Afrikas”).

These multiple awarded photographers show their personal views on Africa from very different angles. They accompany people between gold rush fever and disillusion in the post-apartheid South Africa, they dive into the world of economy with its consequences for society and environment in Nigeria and in Somalia, that is torn by war and terrorism, into the dreamlike world of traveling – which promises freedom and happiness, they present an insight into the living and bedrooms in the slums of Kliptown in South Africa and last but not least, they lead us into the world of African rhythms which reflect the diversity of this gorgeous continent.

Revealing “Immigrant Songs”: The Other Face of Immigration (3-19 October | Rome, MAXXI National Museum of XXI Century Arts | Galleries Claudia Gian Ferrari and Carlo Scarpa)

Photos by ©Angelica Mesiti & Malik Nejmi

Until October 14th, the National Museum of XXI Century Arts in Rome opens its galleries to the performed artwork of the artists Angelica Mesiti and Malik Nejmi, aimed at uncovering an urgent and challenging issue of migration through a specific cultural outlook – the musical dimension. These are two remarkable works manifesting the immigrant’s claim to memory, imagination, beauty and joy entitled: “Citizens Band” by Angelica Mesiti and 4160 by Malik Nejmi.

The exhibition “Immigrant Songs” will be presented in the galleries Claudia Gian Ferrari and Carlo Scarpa. The artwork intends to reveal the other face of the immigrants rather than the clichéd sufferance - “Their artistic soul, their desire and right to poetry, their happiness in engaging with a new civic, transnational and cosmopolitan life.”

Brief but pivotal, the show will be a prelude to Open Museum Open City, the challenging project on the culture of sound that aims to redefine the role of the institution and community, embracing the most crucial issues of contemporary society.

For more information check the : Free Mini Guide – “Immigrant Songs”


Unfolding the MeLa Critical Archive (22-23 November 2014 | Venice, Architecture Biennale 2014 | Padiglione Centrale, SalaF)

MeLa is pleased to invite you to a two-day event dedicated to the launch of the MeLa Critical Archive, promoted in the framework of the final week of the Architecture Biennale 2014.

The MeLa Critical Archive is a digital platform aimed at cohering, conveying and sharing the interdisciplinary investigations produced within the four year long Research Project.

The contents, the architecture and the functioning of the MeLa Critical Archive will be presented through an interactive exhibition, that will open in the Biennale’s Padiglione Centrale (Sala F). The exhibition will open on Saturday 22nd November at 12.30 pm, and will close on Sunday 23rd November at 3pm.

The scholars involved within the MeLa Project will be available to present and discuss the research outcomes on Saturday 22nd from 4 to 6 pm, and on Sunday from 11 am to 1 pm.  With the participation of: Luca Basso Peressut POLIMI, Gennaro Postiglione POLIMI, Francesca Lanz POLIMI, Elena Montanari POLIMI, Walsh Victoria RCA, Perla Innocenti GU, Muñoz Maite MACBA, Lupo Eleonora POLIMI, Whitehead Chris UNEW, Galangau-Quérat Fabienne MNHN, Bak Jacob CIID, Descure Catherine CIID.

* To receive further information or to reserve an interview with the MeLa Partners, please contact mail(at)

‘The (Post)colonial Visions’ Project: Building a Shared Archive of Public and Private Memories of Italian Colonialism

The Routes Agency is promoting the (Post) colonial Visions project, aimed at building a shared archive of Italian colonialism memories and of the intercultural present. It will contain materials preserved in the homes of many Italians that witness the long and significant colonial phase of which Italy was a protagonist. Being able to read again even a single picture sent from the front, a letter, the words of an official document or the representation of colonized peoples made by advertising or in popular magazines, will help to reconstruct the emergence of many visual stereotypes that still dominate our culture. Those materials will be collected via a public call, beginning from Rome and Lazio and then continuing with the rest of Italy. All the materials will be digitalized and then returned to their owners, in order not to deprive the donors of their personal memories.

The (Post) colonial Visions archive will be an open platform and an active social and cultural apparatus or “dispositif”. Artists, scholars, researchers, performers, musicians and writers will be invited to work on the materials in the archive, producing ad hoc artworks or events with them. All the productions made from the archive’s materials will be published in a specific section of the archive’s website and also exhibited and/or performed publicly in specifically organized events.

The initial step will be an unconventional conference that will take place on the 27th and on the 28th of November at the Casa della Memoria e della Storia in Rome, Presente Imperfetto. Eredità coloniali e immaginari razziali contemporanei (Present Imperfect. Colonial heritage and contemporary racial visions).

The need to bring out the connections between the current stereotypes towards the “other” and our colonial past, can only begin from a re-appropriation “from below” of the remaining public and private memories of that time: that’s why a crowdfunding campaign was launched to sustain the project. You can find further details to participate to the campaign at:

(Post) colonial visions will be realized in collaboration with: IRSIFAR – Istitutoromano per la storia d’Italia dal fascismo alla Resistenza; AMM – Archivio Memorie Migranti; Centre of Postcolonial and Gender Studies of the University “L’Orientale”of Naples; Colonial Memories Documentation Centre di Modena.


Inauguration of ‘The Pale Fox’ by Camille Henrot (20 September – 20 December 2014, Bétonsalon, Paris)

On September 20th the Bétonsalon – Center for art and research inaugurated The Pale Fox’, the first large-scale solo exhibition by French, New York-based artist, Camille Henrot in Paris. The exhibition offers a meditation on our shared desire to understand the world intimately through the objects that surround us. As explained by Camille Henrot, its main focus: “is obsessive curiosity, the irrepressible desire to affect things, to achieve goals, to perform actions, and the inevitable consequences”.

The exhibition proposes an immersive environment, a both physical and mental space conveying an almost domestic atmosphere, populated by more than 400 photographs, sculptures, books and drawings displayed on a series of shelves designed by the artist.

‘The Pale Fox’ is commissioned and produced by Bétonsalon – Center for art and research (Paris), Chisenhale Gallery (London), Kunsthal Charlottenborg (Copenhagen) and by Westfälischer Kunstverein (Münster) where it will tour in 2014 – 2015. At Bétonsalon – Center for art and research, ‘The Pale Fox’ is supported by a partnership with the Muséum national d’Histoire naturelle, thanks to the grants from the French Ministry of Culture and Communication SG / SCPCI / DREST (as part of the call for research projects “Intercultural practices in the heritage institutions”), and from the Curating Contemporary Art Programme of the Royal College of Art in the frame of the Project MeLa* European Museums in an age of migrations.

‘Communities, Collectives & Collaboration’ Explored through Participative Photographic Projects (Brighton Photo Biennial, 4 October – 2 November 2014)

Brighton Photo Biennial is the UK’s leading curated photography festival, which promotes new thinking around photography through a commissioned programme of events and exhibitions. The 2014 edition explores the theme Communities, Collectives & Collaboration” through photography based projects produced through innovative, new and unexpected partnerships, ensuing from the cooperation among photographers and artists, anthropologists, environmentalists, scientists, as well as with different young and older members of the communities.

The displayed works include: the outcome of a “giant collective”, which gathered through an open call a participated exploration of the “community” theme; the project “So Like You”, developed by artist Erica Scourti in collaboration with online communities, highlighting the tensions between individual and collective in a network culture; “A View to the Past”, a collaborative program with Brighton residents from different ages led by photographer Lydia Goldblatt, fostering intergenerational links and addressing negative stereotyping; “The Mass Education Project”, investigating the use of autobiographical accounts, diaries, photographs and thoughts of individuals across communities.

The exhibitions are organized throughout the city of Brighton and Hove, and will be displayed from 4 October to 2 November through pop-up settings situated in lively public spaces.

Athena Plus: Access to Cultural Heritage Networks for Europeana (Rome, National Central Library, 2 October 2014)

This event, organized by ICCU, is included in the official program of the Italian Presidency and is organized in collaboration with the European Commission, the Europeana Foundation and the European project AthenaPlus, the European network of good practices coordinated by ICCU.

The Italian Presidency represents a strategic opportunity to propose a workplan shared at European level on the topic of reuse and exploitation of digital cultural heritage. The Ministry recognizes the transversal value of culture, seeks to promote collaboration between the different areas – competitiveness, culture, tourism, research – in collaboration with the responsible European institutions, in particular the Commission with its flagship initiative Europeana.The Conference will provide a space for debate and exchange of ideas in order to plot strategies for the development of digital cultural heritage as a driver of the education and tourism sectors.The Conference will host two sessions and a round table: the first session will focus on the reuse and discoverability of the digital cultural heritage, the second session will illustrate good practices in the fields of  education, edutainment and tourism, the round table will see the participation of several representatives of Institutions involved in European projects and creative industries who will discuss on the topics of the Conference. Program with national and international speakers is available here.

Digital Cultural Content Re-imagined: New Avenues for the Economy and Society (Venice, 16-17 October 2014)


It is becoming ever more important that Cultural Institutions and the Creative Industries connect, to explore new opportunities and unlock the business potential of digital cultural heritage. The Europeana Space project, including representatives of both sectors, intends to demonstrate the long-term value and mutual benefit of creating an open, fertile environment where digital cultural content can be re-used entrepreneurially, to develop innovative creative applications and viable products.

This two-day conference will cover key topics related to re-use of cultural contents in creative Industries, and will present the 6 thematic pilots (including museums) to be developed by Europeana Space, which are going to explore new possibilities of creative reuse of digital cultural content. » Read more