Tag: The Participatory Museum

Co-Creation from Hualcayan to Memphis

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Community residents examine artifacts from this season’s excavations in the “pop-up” museum at the First Annual Cultural Festival of Hualcayán.

I have blogged before about the Proyecto de Investigación Arqueológico Regional Ancash (PIARA) community outreach program in Peru.  This week I have the opportunity to participate and experience the program firsthand.  As well, this week PIARA Directors Rebecca Bria and Elizabeth Cruzado Carranza, and I are discussing collaborative projects that can involve PIARA, the C.H. Nash Museum at Chucalissa, and the University of Memphis Museum Studies Graduate Certificate Program.  We envision that these multiple agencies can participate in the co-creation of cultural heritage opportunities with the Hualcayán village and archaeological site.  We are discussing projects that can align with the missions of all agencies involved.

Hualcayán is located at 3150 masl in the Province of Huaylas, Department of Ancash, Peru flanked by the Cordillera Blanca and Cordillera Negra Mountain ranges in the Callejón de Huaylas valley.  The village is a rural agricultural community located in the midst of archaeological sites that span the last 4000 years of human history in the region.  Although there is a small museum in the nearby city of Caraz, the region’s cultural heritage is not promoted to its potential and archaeological sites are not protected.  In terms of tourism, Caraz and Hualcayán are viewed by most visitors as brief stopovers on their way to adventure tourism and trekking opportunities to lagoons and glacial peaks in the Parque Nacional Huascarán.

As discussed in the previous blog post, PIARA’s perspective on the cultural heritage development is in line with a co-creative participatory process with the community.  In fact, one of the reasons for the close fit for potential PIARA and C.H. Nash Museum collaborative efforts is the common perspective toward cultural heritage development of the two agencies.  Both institutions operate in communities that are generally considered underserved.  In the past few years, both organizations embarked on long-term programs of community engagement and empowerment through cultural heritage development.  As well, both organizations are situated in rich environs of cultural heritage resources.

Another important similarity is that both organizations have spent the past several years laying the groundwork for collaboration with their respective communities.  At the C.H. Nash Museum, that work is summarized in a recent article.  At PIARA that collaboration operates in a very similar manner.  For example, this past Saturday, August 3, PIARA was the initiator and co-sponsor along with the Universidad Nacional Ancash – Santiago Antúnez de Mayolo and the Provincial Municipality of Huaylas of the First Annual Cultural Festival of Hualcayán.  The Festival included visits to the ongoing archaeological excavations in Hualcayán, display of excavated cultural materials, the inauguration of the community library funded and built by PIARA, regional dances, local food, and much more.

As with the recent community outreach projects at the C.H. Nash Museum, the Festival of Hualcayán could not have happened without PIARA’s previous years of community engagement.  That is, without the consistent community outreach by PIARA and engagement over the past several years, there would not have been the collaborative basis on which to build and inspire the Cultural Festival.  PIARA views the Festival as a node on a continuum of community outreach and engagement.  As at the C.H. Nash Museum, the direction of that outreach and engagement for PIARA will continue to develop as a co-creative process with the Hualcayan community.  For example, as posted previously, this summer C.H. Nash Museum intern Lyndsey Pender created the Southwest Memphis Cultural Heritage website only after discussions and collaboration with community residents.  Although the broad parameters of website development were set, the precise future content will be based in community discussions and input.  The dialogue with PIARA and the Hualcayán community continues along on a similar plane.

Which brings me to one of my favorite preaching points – community relevance.  As small institutions, both the C.H. Nash Museum and PIARA are gaining traction, growing, and now receive exponentially greater community support than in the past.  The increased support results because they approach their work in cultural heritage resource management from a perspective that prioritizes not just the co-creative process, but also is based in an approach that is relevant to the community in which they serve.

Community Engagement and Open Authority

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For the past month the C.H. Nash Museum at Chucalissa held Art for Voice camps.  The one-week sessions were age-graded and free of charge.  Each group contained a good mix of students representative of the different neighborhoods, racial and economic backgrounds of Memphis.  A concern in the original stage of the Camp planning was to stay within the Museum’s Mission Statement.  We did not want the Camp simply to be an activity to increase visitation. Instead, the Camp activities drew on the collections curated at the Museum as educational and creative resources. The Camp directly aligned with our mission as a participatory experience for area residents.

This past Saturday, Art for Voice Camp creator Penny Dodds and I had a conversation evaluating this “pilot” program and to consider the next steps.  Several important themes emerged in our conversation.

Opening Authority –  A critical part of the Camp activities involved our curated collections and existing programs.  Besides a drum circle and throwing darts with atlatls, campers viewed Museum exhibits from the Native American and African American traditional cultures of the area.  Based on these experiences, the campers decided the types of objects they wished to use as models to create their artworks.  The campers selected suitable objects from our Hands-on Archaeology lab and materials drawn by our Collections Manager from the Museum’s curated educational collections.

Although not web-based, these processes are in line with Lori Philips initial discussions of open authority in museums and her more recent article published in Curator.  The campers worked with cultural materials of their choosing.  With guidance from both a collections manager and artist, the campers ultimately made their own interpretive and creative decisions.  As I watched the Camp compilation video where the young artists explained the process, I was reminded of the “aha” moment I had some 20 years ago when validating a 5th grade girl’s interpretation of Poverty Point headless figurines.  That is, yes there is a difference between the no touching and static early 1960s introduction to museums of my youth and our 2013 campers throwing darts with atlatls and handling artifacts.  But more importantly, the 2013 campers were not just expected to come up with the correct answer or perform the correct action to be rewarded.  Rather, they engaged in a process where multiple truths and possibilities are considered, along the lines of Parker Palmer’s Interactive Model of the Great Thing.

Leadership Development in Museums – None of the principal players in the Art for Voice Camp were regular staff members of the C.H. Nash Museum.  Penny, the Camp’s initial creator, led the experience.  But by the last week of the Camp, the leadership expanded.  Two of the high school students who participated in either the first or second week of the Camp, participated in weeks three, four, and five by assisting with the younger aged sessions.  In fact, their transition from campers to leaders was critical to accommodate overflow campers originally placed on a waiting list.  As well, two parents of the campers provided their expertise to the sessions by leading drumming circles, sharing their knowledge of traditional medicinal plants growing along the nature trail that campers explored, and general mentoring.  The Museum’s summer intern, Lindsey Pender lent her video editing ability and photographic skills to the project.  When Penny and I discussed the next steps yesterday afternoon, we recognized that we started with one camp “leader” but ended the session with five identified “leaders” who are anxious to expand on the pilot program.

Of importance as well, the youth campers were given authority during the Camp to lead on decisions about free-time learning activities.  For example, during one week of the Camp, the participants composed a musical composition that they performed for their parents at the end of the day using the Museum’s plethora of percussion instruments.

Empowerment –  The Art for Voice camp brought a very public opportunity for empowerment to the fore at our Museum.  As an institution of the University of Memphis, we are quite mindful and intentional to empower our interns and graduate assistants.  In the past several years, we aggressively moved to empower volunteers incorporating an explicitly participatory museum model into our mission.  The Art for Voice Camp, by its very nature, required the proactive empowerment of the participants.  Given the parameters of the Camp, participants were required to process, think through, and create from within.

Third Place – All of the above feeds into the Third Place concept on which I posted before.   Unfortunately, much of the Third Place discussion in museums gets stalled in a rather dogmatic application of Oldenburg’s original concept.  As Natalye Tate concludes in a recent synthesis “. . . the Third Place as Oldenburg envisioned is not necessarily an appropriate programming tool for museums, does not contend that it should be ignored.  Understanding the elemental nature of the Third Place offers museum practitioners a toolkit to pull from and adapt to their various sets of resources, needs and environments.”

In our conversation on Saturday, Penny noted that she had been mindful throughout the process to solicit input from the Camp participants and their parents for ideas on using the Museum in the future as a space for more projects based in curated collections, exhibits, and the 40-acre natural environment.

If one moves beyond an obsession ala the Seinfeld episode The Pitch that a Third Place has to be about nothing, but that it can be about multiple somethings, at Chucalissa we find that many of the attributes that might be ascribed to a Third Place are now in place.  In addition to the general conviviality of our picnic grounds and hiking trails, our ability to creatively incorporate volunteers, art camps, host community meetings, Black History month events, training sessions for Literacy Midsouth, and a community garden – all contain elements of the Third Place and remains within the limits of our mission statement.  At the same time while expanding the opportunities for our more traditional interpretive functions, we bring more of our community voices to the same table in dialog.  This process is in direct alignment with the International Council of Museum’s definition of museum as:

a non-profit, permanent institution in the service of society and its development, open to the public, which acquires, conserves, researches, communicates and exhibits the tangible and intangible heritage of humanity and its environment for the purposes of education, study and enjoyment.

How do you envision museum’s opening authority and co-creative processes?

Co-creation as a Process, not an Event

Veterans Honor

The second of two banners presented by Delta 9 Team of AmeriCorps NCCC at September 11, 2012 Remembrance Day event at the Charles Powell Community Center in Southwest Memphis.

Three years ago at the C.H. Nash Museum at Chucalissa we began a co-created exhibit process on the African-American Cultural Heritage of the community surrounding the museum.  A Strengthening Communities Initiative grant funded the initial phase of the work.  I have posted before about the project.  A recent article published in Museums and Social Issues summarizes that work and subsequent related projects.  This summer we have taken another step in the co-creation of the exhibit initially created and installed by area high school students in the summer of 2010.

For the past year we discussed digitizing the 2010 exhibit.  A goal was to create a website with the digitized content to use as a resource for presenting and collecting more information on the cultural heritage of the community.  This past spring I was approached by a community resident, Lyndsey Pender, who is also an undergraduate in anthropology at Western Kentucky University in Bowling Green.  Lyndsey asked if there was a summer internship opportunity at the C.H. Nash Museum.  We quickly settled on a project where she would digitize the exhibit and create the website.  That story is told here.

We are fortunate that Lyndsey, as a community resident, is taking on the project.  Yet the broader representation of the community in the process is critical.  Thus far, Lyndsey and museum staff participated in three formal meetings with representatives and/or the general membership of the Westwood Neighborhood Association to discuss the next steps.  Besides overall content, the meetings addressed issues such as maintenance of the website, the relationship of the website to the C.H. Nash Museum, and the curation of future content.  As with the initial exhibit created in 2010, the Museum Staff is committed to providing the logistical support for sustaining the African-American Cultural Heritage in Southwest Memphis website, and will cross-link through the Museum’s website and other social media outlets.  However, the scope of the content will rest on the decisions of the Southwest Memphis community.

At the Westwood Neighborhood Association meeting this past Saturday, community residents in attendance provided a host of suggestions and submissions for the website.  Ms. Olar Hughes presented a 10-page document she and other residents created on the history of the Westwood Community.  On September 11, 2012 the AmeriCorps NCCC Team working in Westwood presented banners celebrating the contributions of military veterans from the community.  Since that presentation, community residents have submitted additional Veteran photos.  On Saturday, we discussed creating a page on the website that would contain a slide show honoring all the veterans.
Participants in the Saturday meeting recognized the valuable role that the website could play in the community schools where information on neighborhood history is scant.  We envision that high school and younger students will be able to use and add to the website over the course of their studies.  Lyndsey will finish her work this summer by creating quizzes and a virtual scavenger hunt based on the website to be used in the schools.

The above processes directly address concerns often expressed around the lack of direct community engagement in museums.  The appropriate mantra in recognizing the solution seems to be it’s a “process not event” in co-creating with museum partners.  That is, today our museum staff and Westwood community residents see tremendous potential in the African-American Cultural Heritage in Southwest Memphis website.  However, the discussion at this past Saturday’s community meeting could not have occurred, had we not gone through the past four years of co-creation.

How do you envision co-creation in your museum?

The AmeriCorps NCCC River 7 Team & Community Outreach

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AmeriCorps NCCC River 7 Team with Southwest Memphis homeowner.

Today starts our final week of eight with the AmeriCorps NCCC River 7 Team at the C.H. Nash Museum at Chucalissa.  River 7 is the third AmeriCorps NCCC Team our Museum has hosted since 2012.  The three teams have operated in a unique partnership with the C.H. Nash Museum, the Westwood Neighborhood Association, and the T.O. Fuller State Park.  The Team worked in the Westwood neighborhood with elderly homeowners to help with landscaping and structural repairs.  At T.O. Fuller State Park the Team planted over 1000 trees and installed signage along the six miles of trail.  At the C.H. Nash Museum, the Team helped reconfigure the museum’s library and repository and completed the refurbishment of a residential facility that will house future community service teams.  The AmeriCorps NCCC River 7 Team also worked with employees from the newly constructed Electrolux plant who volunteered and provided economic support for the home repair projects in Westwood.  Click here for additional information about the River 7 Team.

The AmeriCorps NCCC exemplifies the very positive role that millennials play in our country today.  AmeriCorps partnerships with museums allow cultural institutions to live into one of their defining principles set forth by the International Council of Museums as “. . . institutions in the service of society and of its development.”

As the AmeriCorps NCCC River 7 Team gets ready to leave Memphis and head for their next eight-week round in West Virginia, I asked the nine Team Members and their Team Leader to explain why they joined AmeriCorps NCCC.  Here are their responses.

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William Custus (left) and Corbin Beastrom (right)

My name is William Custus. I am 22 yrs old. I’m originally from Baltimore Maryland but I now live in Washington DC. I joined AmeriCorps NCCC on February 11th 2013. The reason I joined AmeriCorps is because I believe in making a difference in people’s lives, and shaping communities to become safer, smarter, and healthier.

Corbin Beastrom is a former college student from Cedar Rapids, Iowa. After three years in academia, he dropped out of a world defined by in-class essays, titular student government, and DC internships to embark on what he refers to as, “his first sabbatical.” Following graduation from AmeriCorps NCCC Corbin plans to lead a nomadic lifestyle comprised of graduate school, organic farming, and coffee.

Kaneesha and KT

Kaneesha Frazier (left) and KT Ainsworth (right) get their first taste of crawfish at St. John’s Episcopal church in Memphis.

My name is KT Ainsworth and I am 18 years old and from Bend, Oregon. During my junior year of high school, my dad received a heart and kidney transplant. The community took time out of their busy lives to help my family and make sure my siblings and I were cared for. Seeing just how much a community of people were able to positively affect a family’s life made me want to carry the kindness forward. That is why I joined AmeriCorps NCCC. Seeing the difference my team makes every single day is what pushes me to keep going. I love what I do and who I do it for.

My name is Kaneesha Frazier and I am from Columbus, Ohio.  I joined AmeriCorps NCCC to help strengthen communities. I heard about AmeriCorps NCCC from my school Youth Build in Columbus and I plan to continue my college education in criminal justice upon completion of the NCCC program.

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Bobbie Jean Keller (left) and Raymond Smith (right)

My name is Bobbie Keller, I am 19 years old and before AmeriCorps NCCC I lived in Long Beach, Mississippi. I was affected by hurricane Katrina in 2005 and ever since then I have had a desire to pay it forward. AmeriCorps NCCC is the perfect program for me, I get to travel and volunteer.

Hello my name is Raymond Smith. I am 19 years old and from Chicago Illinois. I joined AmeriCorps NCCC in February 2013. I joined because I heard that there was a program that helps communities in need and respond to disasters. I have a passion for helping others and to see that it makes me happy. I also joined to help change and decrease the crime rate by getting out into the communities setting an example for others so our world could become a better place.

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John Cipollo (left) and James Burks (right)

My name is John Cipollo. I am 23 years old and I am from Bristol, Connecticut. I joined AmeriCorps NCCC because I wanted to give back to the community.

I am James Burks.  Well my reason for attending AmeriCorps NCCC was to help others and at the same time better myself. I also was interested in the traveling to see and visit different places. I was born in Chicago, Illinois but moved to Park Forest, Illinois. I have other sisters and a brother, but I am the youngest of them all. I wanted to venture off and see what I can do with my life. I like all kinds of sports.  I am 20 years old and I like to chill and have fun. I want to make a difference in our community and I plan to try my best to do that.

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John Hamburger (left) and Robert Gurley, President of the Westwood Neighborhood Association with Ana Rea, Team Leader for River 7 (right)

My full name is John Dale Hamburger III, and I am originally from Grand Island, Nebraska but for the past two years I have lived in Chadron, Nebraska going to Pine Ridge Job Corps. The reason I have come to AmeriCorps NCCC is due to the opportunity I have been presented to help others like when I was in Air Force Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps at Grand Island Senior High school. I feel great helping others and when something like AmeriCorps NCCC presented itself to me, I just couldn’t give it up so easily. Also cause I have always wanted to travel to other places and get to know others. Plus I can’t lie – I also did it for the College opportunity and I wanted to make a difference in my family by being the first person out of both sides of my family to finish a four-year college.

My name is Ana Rea and I was raised and had lived in Greenville, TX since the age of 9 and had never left my small town until I joined AmeriCorps NCCC. After attending Texas A&M-Commerce for a year I decided to take a break and really discover what it was that I wanted to do with my future.  I am currently serving in my second year of AmeriCorps NCCC Southern Region as a  Team Leader for River 7 and so far, I have been privileged enough to serve in the states of Tennessee, West Virginia, Virginia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas. I plan on continuing the path of service to others with an open mind and learning something new every day.

You can contact the AmeriCorps NCCC River 7 Team at – river.team.seven@gmail.com

The Relevance of Cultural Heritage Professionals

A few months ago I posted a Museum Practices seminar student, Leila Hamdan’s response to the following question:

Put yourself in the position of John or Josephine Q. Public. In the current economic chaos, the bank is foreclosing on their home, they have lost their jobs, and the city just reduced their public services. In referring to the National Endowment for the Arts and the Institute of Museum and Library Services, the House Budget Committee recently arguedthat “The activities and content funded by these agencies…are generally enjoyed by people of higher income levels, making them a wealth transfer from poorer to wealthier citizens.” Isn’t your research or the position you aspire to as a museum professional just another example of this wealth transfer? What do John and Josephine Q. Public get for their tax dollars that fund your research/position?

Since that time, I have asked these questions of my students more often in both formal and informal settings.  I believe that the ability to articulate the relevance of cultural heritage professionals to the issues facing our country today is critically important.   The essay below is a portion of the written comprehensive exam answer to my questions for University of Memphis Anthropology Graduate Student Mallory Bader.  For her practicum project in Anthropology, Mallory coordinated last fall’s AmeriCorps Team project at the C.H. Nash Museum.  As well, for the past two years, she served as a graduate assistant at the C.H. Nash Museum.  And I should add, today Mallory successfully passed her written and oral comprehensive exams for her M.A. degree in Anthropology at the University of Memphis.  Below is Mallory’s answer to the above question:

MBader1by Mallory Bader

Our world is rapidly changing due to globalization and modernization. Cities are shifting, economies are collapsing, and violence threatens us daily. Citizens often question the value of museums and the government entities that support them such as the National Endowment for the Arts and the Institute of Museum and Library Services.  It is often said that museums are places for the elite, making these taxpayer-funded organizations doing a wealth transfer.  However, I would argue that this is not true.  Museums have historically been viewed as places for the elite, but that model is shifting towards a new museum that is more participatory and engaging.  Additionally, museums offer many services to the public that do not benefit only the elite or wealthy citizens, such as educating youth and protecting natural resources.  As an emerging museum professional, my work in museums is not a wealth transfer and the benefits that John and Josephine Q. Public get for their tax dollars are immense and real.

The shift of demographics in America has been reflected in museums.  The United States is now a majority-minority population and is becoming more diverse daily. In museums, people of color and low socio-economic status have not always felt welcome due to the stigma of museums as places for the elite. However, many programs have been instituted that are shifting the visitation of museums. The Center for the Future of Museums publishes a state of museums article that details the various ways museums are reaching out to increasingly diverse audiences.  Museums are adding front-line staff that speak multiple languages, offering free or reduced admission to visitors receiving public assistance, conducting outreach into areas that have historically not been museum visitors, and many other things.  This is one way that museums are not simply enjoyed by people of higher income.

As an emerging museum education professional, my job is to educate youth and adults on a variety of topics. Similar to a teacher, I must provide an engaging and stimulating learning environment that builds on core curriculum standards.  As a museum educator, I feel that my job is a public servants job, just like a teacher would be. In addition, I would argue that other museum professionals such as collections managers are also public servants by protecting the natural and cultural resources of our nation.

Although at this time, I do not know where my career will end up in museums, I can say with certainty that my position is not just another example of this wealth transfer.  At Chucalissa, I have provided quality educational programming to thousands of students in my two years at the museum. John and Josephine Q. Public directly benefit from this through having students graduate more prepared, more engaged, and ready to enter the workforce.  In addition, I have assisted with community outreach projects that help with community development projects that make Memphis a better and healthier place to live.  My future career in museums is not set, but my plans include projects similar to the ones I have conducted at Chucalissa. In addition, my long-term goal is to operate a science museum that focuses on providing STEM education to underserved students.  This will help to provide a better prepared workforce in our world that is increasingly reliant on technology. My partner in this project has a PhD in Materials Chemistry from CU-Boulder. Together, we have applied to the National Science Foundation for a Graduate School Innovation Challenge to present a model of service learning and outreach for STEM education through museums.

Both she and I have been committed to justifying our positions as researchers at taxpayer funded institutions by engaging in outreach during our careers.   These are the various ways in which my position and research within museums are benefiting John and Josephine Q. Public

Mallory can be contacted at mbader(at)memphis.edu

Exploring Alternative Volunteer Opportunities

AmeriCorps

Participants in the Emerging Leadership’s Service on Saturday volunteer program at the University of Memphis

I have thought a good bit about volunteering lately, in part because of the evolution in how this process works at the C.H. Nash Museum at Chucalissa.  I posted before about our Museum’s irregular staff that includes a range of volunteers, student interns, and community service participants.  In the past year we saw a stagnation in our traditional once-a-month type volunteer program but a radical growth in the other components of our “irregular staff” category.  For example, our traditional Volunteer Saturdays now have a more modest attendance than two years ago.  At the same time, in 2012 the real hours contributed at Chucalissa by the total of these irregular staff continued to increase (@8500) and exceeded that of the regular staff (@8000).

The entry for volunteering at Wikipedia provides some insights on the shift we are seeing.  The entry notes that volunteering:

is generally considered an altruistic activity and is intended to promote good or improve human quality of life. In return, this activity produces a feeling of self-worth and respect; however, there is no financial gain. Volunteering is also renowned for skill development, socialization, and fun. It is also intended to make contacts for possible employment. Many volunteers are specifically trained in the areas they work . . .

What I like about this entry is that the very essence of the action is focused on the volunteer and not the agency.  That is, in the case of museums the institution is meeting the need and providing a service for the volunteer.  Intuitively, that understanding seems to flip the traditional concept of volunteers as those providing the service.  However, the institution being the provider in the service relationship is the essence of the Participatory Museum.  This understanding is stated in the opening paragraph in a recent article on volunteers:

To begin, we start with a question: If there were an opportunity for an unlimited number of paid staff at museums would we still recruit volunteers to assist in collections work? In this paper we answer that question with a resounding yes. In fact, we suggest that with increased paid staff, the quantity of volunteers should increase as well. We base this assessment in recognizing the shift of museums from being collections driven to centering on the visitor experience (Anderson 2004:2-5), an educational approach that is constructivist (Hein 2006:347-349) and that acknowledges the role of free-choice learning (Falk and Dierking 2002).  (R.P. Connolly & N.B. Tate, 2011,Volunteers and Collections as Viewed from the Museum Mission Statement. Collections, 7(3), p. 325-346)

The flipping of roles makes the museum responsible for addressing the public needs whose cultural heritage the museum presents and preserves.  In this capacity, it becomes incumbant upon the museum to provide opportunities for volunteering that align with how the public organize their volunteering capacity.

Besides the traditional, consider a few of  the other types of volunteers we now serve at the C.H. Nash Museum:

  • Avocational Organizations – I previously posted about the work of Memphis Archaeological and Geological Society.  Also, for nearly ten years the Southwind Garden Club has planted seasonal floral arrangements at the museum.  In a two-year effort, the Club created an arboretum at the site with plans for expansion in the coming months.  Over a similar period, the Friends of Chucalissa provided integral support in coordinating special events and fundraising for the Museum.  Particularly as the public pursuit of informal lifelong learning continues to grow, avocational and social groups will expand their outreach for volunteering opportunities.
  • Scout Youth Groups – Through both regular volunteer service activities and program requirements, Boy and Girl Scout groups have built, painted, or maintained a variety of facilities, both large and small at our Museum.  We maintain a regular list of possible projects for these groups to choose from.  As youth discretionary time becomes more structured with a host of competing activities, we might expect that youth groups will continue as a primary outlet to experience volunteering in the formative years.
  • Community Service Learning –  Through programs such as the University of Memphis Emerging Leaders, area high schools, alternative spring breaks, students at all levels take part in curriculum-based volunteer activities that last for anywhere from 2 hours to several days in length.  This type of volunteering proved instrumental in creating our medicinal plant sanctuary, landscaping at the Museum, exhibit creation, and in community outreach/cleanup projects.  Community service/learning continues to increase both informally and through formal educational curriculum with no evidence of reaching a plateau anytime soon.

The above examples can be less predictable than recruiting the traditional volunteer docent who will show up like clockwork every other Tuesday and Saturday.  However, in the same way that to remain relevant to the public that we serve, museums are shifting more to family programs in response to the reduction in the school “field trip” experience, we must also provide new and creative volunteer opportunities that are relevant to the public needs.

Without a doubt, the most exciting conferences I have attended for the past two years are the Volunteer Tennessee Annual Meetings that explores many of these possibilities.  I will post about one of my favorites, the The Corporation for National and Community Service, separately.

What innovations have you incorporated into your volunteer programs? 

The Unbearable Whiteness of Being

Laura

Recently, Nina Simon summarized the posts of several bloggers on the lack of ethnic diversity in the arts.  This past week she posted On White Privilege and Museums that explores museums as venues of white privilege.  Comments responding to the latter post are plentiful (over 30) and range across a broad spectrum from support to rejection with opinions divided more-or-less akin to a bell-shaped curve.

An important tool for approaching diversity in museums rests in Simon’s model of the co-creative projects she discusses in The Participatory Museum.  Simon (2010:187) writes the purpose of a co-creative community project is “To give voice and be responsive to the needs and interests of local community members; to provide a place for community engagement and dialogue; and to help participants develop skills that will support their own individual and community goals.” This nuts and bolts approach was addressed in a recent guest post on Simon’s Museum 2.0 blog – Tools for Partnering With Community Members.  This post elicited three brief comments in response.  Using amount of feedback as a gauge, the discussion of more methodological approaches for community engagement are of less interest in the museum community than a more theoretical discussion on white privilege.

As a museum director, I am influenced by my discipline of applied anthropology.  Writing in the Epilogue to Places in Mind: Public Archaeology as Applied AnthropologyErve Chambers (2004:194) notes “What is important to recognize here is that what makes this work applied is not the knowledge itself, which certainly can be relevant to the interests of others, but the act of engagement with others who are trying to make decisions related to particular heritage resources.”  This approach is completely aligned to Simon’s co-creative processes.  Elsewhere, I liken this approach as moving those represented in museums from the role of actors on the stage to directors of the performance.

Though scholars considered the inherent problems in viewing museums as elite institutions since before the publication of John Cotton Dana‘s New Museum early in the 20th Century, addressing the concern today remains a substantive discussion in museum studies.  I am convinced that a strategic long-term commitment to incrementally operationalize and institutionalize steps that consistently address diversity and representation in museums remains critical to demonstrating the relevance and sustainability of cultural heritage venues.  Without such a commitment, we should not expect the public to treat us as anything other than modern-day carpetbaggers.

At the C.H. Nash Museum at Chucalissa the past five years presented revealing experiences as our cultural heritage venue governed by the University of Memphis launched an outreach program to the residents of the 95% African-American community in which the facility is located.  The back story of that process is covered here.  Some of the key observations we made from this five-year expereince include:

  • We learned about the place of the informal economic institution and community matriarch/caretaker known as the “candy lady” from the high school students who created an exhibit on the cultural heritage of their community at the C.H. Nash Museum in 2010.  The youth spoke with ease and knowledge of these women and their institutional role in the community.  Neither JSTOR, the first three pages of a Google search, or Wikipedia provide any reference to the role of a community candy lady.  This simple experience, and others like it from the summer of 2010, demonstrated that if we do not fully engage community as equal partners and/or co-creators in museum exhibits, the museum staff simply does not have access to the information to tell the story.
  • In the spring of 2012 we held a series of focus groups to obtain stakeholder input on the redesign of our main hall exhibits.  One of the focus groups was with residents who live in the community surrounding the museum.  In the focus group, the residents expressed a modest interest in the exhibit upgrade but were particularly drawn to the current Native American traditional food exhibits.  The residents reflected on the traditional foods of their youth and regretted that the community did not have a space for a public urban garden to grow these crops today.  Our museum complex has 40 acres of open space, including an unused garden area, so the match was obvious.  The community now has a public urban garden, that doubles as a museum exhibit, and provides programming opportunities.  The lesson learned is that had our staff brainstormed at length on community engagement, I doubt we would have hit on this need and opportunity of a public urban garden planted, tended, and harvested by the neighborhood residents.  In Experience Service Learning, Robert Kronick et al. (2011:23) write that the service relationship is where one “listens to the concerns of the group or person, lets the “other” define the situation, and responds by trying to meet that need. In listening and learning, receiving and giving, the service-learning relationship is horizontal, lateral, parallel. It is not hierarchical.”
  • To the extent we have been successful in year five of our community outreach efforts, we were required to complete the first four.  That is, had we not gone through outreach projects in years one through four we could not have gotten to year five.  This understanding is integral to building long-term sustainable and relevant outreach efforts at diversification.
  • And finally, persistence is key, as well it should be.  Just because a museum has an epiphany and sees the light on community engagement, there is no reason for the long ignored community to view the efforts with anything more than suspicion.  I vividly recall the first community meeting I attended where we academics proclaimed our interest in outreach.  One community leader stated “Don’t tell me what the University of Memphis is going to do for my community.  The last time you were here for two years doing your research and all we got was a map on the wall.”

Both Simon’s discussion of co-creative experiences and Chambers concept of applied engagement are relevant in creating a mission driven perspective of service to the entire public with a true opportunity to address diversity and whiteness in museums.  This approach is wholly in line with the International Council of Museum’s definition of museums as “. . . institutions in the service of society and of its development” (ICOM 2004:222).

I will end here with a plug for an upcoming issue (this spring or summer) of Museums and Social Issues edited by Elizabeth Bollwerk, Natalye Tate and myself.  The issue titled “Open(ing) Authority Through Community Engagement” contains a set of case studies on this very topic.

What steps does your institution take to be relevant to the diverse public that you serve?

 

Coproduction & Co-creation with Volunteers

collection-distortA few weeks ago Ennis Barbery wrote here about coproduction with the public in archaeology.  In museums, Nina Simon has published on the co-creative process in The Participatory Museum.  In an interview, Natalye Tate a former Graduate Assistant at Chucalissa noted, “Our role at the museum is to broker ideas to bring in volunteers who are members of communities, and ask what do you want to see, what do your kids want to see and what’s the direction you want to take this collection . . . our job is not to be the creators, but to make sure the process gets done and gets done well.”  These three concepts converge in a direction that we are moving at the C.H. Nash Museum at Chucalissa with our “volunteer” experiences.  For the past four years a combination of volunteers and graduate students worked diligently to re-inventory the archaeological collections curated by the University of Memphis.  Many volunteers were eager for the opportunity to just touch, count, and inventory the prehistoric and historic materials.  As well, we are always quite intentional to explain the significance of the specific tasks that volunteers perform.  However, we continue to frame the volunteer tasks as preparing the materials for an “other” whether professional or student, who will take the process to the next step of analysis and interpretation.

On March 16th we will begin a process where the “other” will be the volunteers themselves.  The aim is for the volunteers to select an unreported or under-reported curated collection from our repository, undertake a complete analysis of the collection and associated records, and create an exhibit based on the materials for an area library or other public venue.

For example, during our Saturday Volunteer Day last week,  a volunteer was inventorying a collection of several thousand projectile points and ceramic sherds of a surface collection from Lincoln County, Tennessee.  A landowner donated the materials to the C.H. Nash Museum in 1981 from the uncontrolled surface collections made over several decades on the family farm.  Like so many of our collections, the artifacts were dutifully accessioned, counted, weighed, labeled, placed in plastic bags, then in boxes never to again see the light of day except during spot inventories every few years.

This past Saturday the collection provided me the opportunity to deliver one of my infamous “Why what you are doing is more important than eating a plate of worms” impromptu ramblings.  I noted that although the collection was unprovenienced except to the landowners plowed fields, the projectile points in the collection represented an age range of several thousand years.  The Native Americans made the tools from a variety of raw materials that outcrop throughout the Midsouth of the United States.  Further the several hundred artifacts typically called “arrowheads” actually included dart points, drills, knives and host of other tool types.  Based on their website, the Lincoln County Museum located near where artifacts were collected does not appear to have a prehistoric exhibit.  I noted that the collection that the volunteer was inventorying would be an ideal set of artifacts to develop an exhibit that could illustrate many aspects of Native American lifeways in prehistory including stone tool technology, trade and exchange, and settlement patterns.

Nice idea, but how will this happen?

Ten members of the Memphis Archaeological and Geological Society (MAGS) have signed up to volunteer once a month to work on such projects.  The first meeting will be March 16.  MAGS was actually formed over 60 years ago as a group of avocational archaeologists who conducted some of the first excavations at the Chucalissa site.  In fact, Kenneth Beaudoin, an avocational archaeologist wrote the first report on Chucalissa that reported those excavations.  MAGS published the report in 1952.  Although MAGS evolved over the years to focus on geology, a strong archaeological interest remains.

Each Saturday session will provide instruction on archaeological interpretation and analysis techniques.  We will also involve graduate students from our Museum Studies Graduate Certificate Program to assist in the construction of exhibits.

There are two important results from the above process.  First, our goal is to move closer to the model envisioned by Natalye Tate in her interview of a couple of years ago.  That is, the volunteers will take on more of the decision-making in the coproduction or co-creative processes.  The volunteers will become more familiar with the collections we curate and their skill set will increase along with their possibilities for taking on a more active role in future projects.

An even more important result is that the C.H. Nash Museum and collections we curate become more relevant to the public who we serve.  Consider the added relevance from the above scenario.  The donated collection that remained unused since 1981 will:

  • Provide members of MAGS the opportunity to take part in a project in which they have an expressed interest as part of their lifelong learning experience.
  • University of Memphis students in both archaeology and museum studies will gain valuable applied experience in material analysis, exhibit construction, and public outreach.
  • The Lincoln County Museum will install an exhibit on the prehistory of their region to more holistically interpret the rich cultural heritage of their region.
  • The C.H. Nash Museum at Chucalissa will become a more relevant institution to all of the above publics that we serve.

How can your collections and practices better demonstrate relevance to the public you serve?

Presentation, Participation and Relevance in 2013

steel ponies

Steel Ponies exhibit, 2012, Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art

I have been thinking about some of the key concepts to address in community outreach around cultural heritage issues in 2013.  Here are my top three:

Presentation – Cultural heritage institutions continue to curate more and more material both in real-time and digitally.    What seems crucial is the ability to present this wealth of material to the public whom we serve.  In the past couple of years at the C.H. Nash Museum at Chucalissa we  spent hundreds of hours tagging and digitizing 50 years worth of black and white photos.  We report the progress on this project in our newsletters and occasionally post images on our blog or Facebook.  However, we have yet to develop an effective means to present these digitized images to the public.  We might reasonably expect public interest in these photos to range from scholarly research to more casual access.  Similarly, although at Chucalissa we have logged thousands of hours over the past several years to re-inventory curated cultural materials, and linking those collections with their associated records, we have barely scratched the surface in the potential of presenting the material to the public.

Participation – In 2010, Nina Simon’s The Participatory Museum synthesized and institutionalized the past several years of discussion and innovation on museum visitor engagement.  Simon’s scheme of contributory, collaborative, co-creative, and hosting types of visitor activities is a particularly useful model.  A challenge for cultural heritage institutions remains to truly incorporate the co-creative experiences that Simon notes are aimed “To give voice and be responsive to the needs and interests of local community members; To provide a place for community engagement and dialogue; To help participants develop skills that will support their own individual and community goals.”  Such an approach involves moving beyond staff discussions that attempt to anticipate or interpret national trends to better incorporate the visitor into museums.  Such co-creative approaches cannot be limited to projects with ready financial support, staff, or research interest but truly be in line with expressed community interests.  My colleague Natalye Tate was interviewed about community engagement a couple of years ago when she worked as a graduate assistant at the C.H. Nash Museum.  Her comments remain very relevant today when she noted: “Our role at the museum is to broker ideas to bring in volunteers who are members of communities, and ask what do you want to see, what do your kids want to see and what’s the direction you want to take this collection . . . our job is not to be the creators, but to make sure the process gets done and gets done well . . . not to be a house of authoritative knowledge where we tell you what you need to know  . . . which remains a problem in America . . .  that we tell people what their history is and they never go find it out for themselves.”

Relevance – Since reading and writing about Robert Janes’ Museums in a Troubled World, the simple concept of relevance remains in the forefront of my thinking.  Debbie Morrison at online learning insights reports on the MOOC coursera.org and their plans in 2013 to start making money on their online offerings.  The gist is that for select courses coursera will begin to offer upgraded versions of a certificate of completion for a fee.   I expect that the MOOC naysayers will come up with a big “We told you so” that the free stuff was too good to last.  My suspicion however is that coursera, that never claimed a nonprofit status, is moving forward with a very sound and relevant business plan.  If even less than 10% of the current number of folks completing coursera courses opt to pay up to 75.00 for the enhanced version of a certificate of completion, then a typical course could generate $50,000.00 in revenues.   To the extent the enhanced documentation proves relevant to the enrolled student, coursera will make money.  My own experience in taking coursera offerings is that successful completion of a course can approach or even exceed the results of a bricks and mortar higher education course offering.  To the extent coursera can demonstrate this result to employers and students, the relevance of that 75.00 fee will be a bargain price.

Presentation, participation, and relevance that go beyond proposals and theoretical discussions, but stand the test of a rigorous evaluation will likely separate the wheat from the chaff in cultural heritage work in the coming year.  In the same way that higher education must prioritize the student to remain competitive, in 2013 cultural heritage institutions have an opportunity to demonstrate relevance to the public we serve.

What are your key concepts for 2013?

What Means This Object?

For the final exam this past semester in my Museum Practices seminar for the Museum Studies Graduate Certificate Program at the University of Memphis students wrote essays responding to the questions from one of nine themes  in the paper The Future of Museums and Libraries: A Discussion Guide published in 2010 by The Institute of Museum and Library Services.  Although I enjoyed reading all the essays this year, one stood out in particular.  The essay below by Penny Dodds takes up the theme Shifts in Power and Authority.  From a perspective that draws on the material objects and relationships from her own life history, Ms. Dodds powerfully articulates the essential engagement between communities and their museums.  She has graciously allowed me to post her essay for this week’s blog as follows:

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Penny Dodds

Penny Dodds

Museum Practices

December 13, 2012

Final Exam

My mother grew up the eldest of seven children.  She lived in a Polish ghetto neighborhood in Utica, NY – a bastard child, poor, raised by her adopted hobo father and her mother who left for weeks at a time.  Although my mother’s background is integral to this story, the story I want to tell has to do with me; and a stool.  I am the fourth of five children.  When I was born, my sister, the eldest, was fourteen.  I was the only child raised by my mother who received any type of chair.  It was mine, my mother told me, because she noticed that I had nowhere to sit that was my size.  My stool was five simple pieces of wood stained dark brown.  It had a little base for me with four holes where the pegged legs held it up.  No nails.  I cherished this stool growing up because it meant my mother cared for me in my daily life of constant neglect.  I felt special because she bought it just for me.

When I left home, I took the stool with me.  It continued to be part of my visual home life.  In my mid-thirties, pregnant and purging my belongings readying myself for my first child, I gave this stool away.  I had reinterpreted it to symbolize my mother’s clear inability to think of others.  She grew up with children.  She had three before me!  The stool became a token, rather than the proof that my mother’s love hovered over me daily.  I refused to think of myself as special from my siblings and deserving of her attentiveness.  I gave it away with my need to give away all my childhood pain so that I would be my own version of “mama” and not a reaction to her.

But I ache now for that stool.  I am now in my early forties and I want to touch it.  I want my own girl to touch it.  Now, it means to me that I was loved despite her constant inability to take care of me.  It means I had a place to sit in our home that was my size and she made sure of it.  My stool represents her thinking of life from my perspective.  It’s somewhere.  The pain of its absence now could be perceived as nonsensical yet, as the work in museums of presenting objects with stories, this seemingly worthless item holds the dearest of life’s learning about being a child, an adult, a mother, and love, understanding and forgiveness.

I begin with this story to address the discussion theme on “Shifts in Power and Authority” and the impact they have on future museums.  This story illustrates 1) the psychological relationship individuals can have with objects and the shifts in interpreting that relationship that can happen with just one person; imagine a whole community; 2) the impact of thinking from someone else’s perspective in a position of power; 3) the flux of valuing and devaluing one’s own history in connection with objects; and, 4) subtly, the impact a third party would have had on my decision to give away my stool.  To me, museum staff represents the “third party” in our culture.  They can offer their expertise in how to cherish objects, tell stories from them, and empower people; especially, those who feel disconnected in our culture by making sure their objects are treasured, seen and, through them, their stories are told.

How will museums make materials and information available to their communities and provide context and content which is appropriate?  This will happen in a constant engagement with a museum’s community.  This process will include:  knowing which stories are important to the community through dialogue and observation; offering volunteer opportunities to engage on different levels of desired participation[1]; using digital technology to catalogue and interpret a museum’s collection for visitors; and, designing the museum space (physical and virtual) to engage a range of ages, social groupings[2] (i.e. families, school groups, individual visitors, etc.) and diverse backgrounds.  Museums will use their space to have exhibitions that unite collections under “big ideas” which “ha[ve] fundamental meaningfulness that is important to human nature.”[3]  More of the collections will be used because they will rotate exhibition space more often.[4]  As communities adjust to seeing their “authority” grow in choices of exhibitions and accessibility to materials, we cannot predict the multitude of innovative ways future museums will expand their abilities to share what they house in ways that keep content and context.

As the shift continues in museums to open its collections and choice of themed exhibitions to their communities, a museum will be judged by how well it shares its authority and is authentic in its quest to honor differing worldviews.  Excellence in museum work will include identifying the community as stakeholders in the museum and including them in the museum’s strategic plan[5]; viewing objects through overarching themes which help visitors examine and question who they are[6];  and “…integrat[ing] assessments of progress into the day-to-day activities of the organization as an integral part of the planning and development process.”[7]  This cycle of acknowledging the diverse public as stakeholders, creating meaningful presentations, and self-evaluation will perpetuate a sustainable museum in the future.  Trust in these presentations will not be lost but gained.  Finding value in all people’s histories will help us as a whole, politically, to understand one another and communicate better with each other to address common world-wide concerns; such as, the environment, food, opportunities for all to have basic needs met, etc.  Museums, as well-respected authorities[8] and places of life-long learning, have the unique position to keep the community in touch with one another through these actions.  They can help people to know themselves as individuals within our complex society and, hopefully, set a course for a future they choose – not settle for.

Digital social networking will impact museums and their services by expanding the discussion space outside of the actual physical building[9].  The community could have the opportunity to comment, challenge, and add their own perspectives through the museum’s website.  Museum administrators can advocate their work through blogs and find political and financial support for their work[10].  Visitors may be able to personalize what they learned and share this with others on websites they create.[11]  Visitors using social media can tag, leave comments, and add to collective memories within museum exhibitions[12] to be stored by the museum for the community’s reference later.  The more voices heard, the more voices can be included.  It does not mean that the authority of the museum is questioned or even taken away.  Not a bit.  Hearing what more people think is a way to know one’s audience – where they are at intellectually, psychologically, and emotionally– and this knowledge can be used to scaffold learning in exhibitions, create engaging themes which one may never have thought of, learn oral histories or memories that would not surface without this “openness” and ease of dialogue, and help identify misunderstandings that inhibit peace – socially and environmentally.

Some impediments to sharing and providing access to materials lie within the museum itself.  If the wider community base is now considered “stakeholders”, traditional, key stakeholders may fear the changes that will occur.[13] They may have to let go of some programming to include newer programming.  Genoways and Ireland suggest that when the whole museum board and staff have worked on a strategic plan together to include the community as stakeholders, then referring back to the soundness of this plan should help overcome this fear.  Another impediment within museums is the challenge to shift from object-based museum work to culturally centered work with communities and their relations to the larger natural world.[14]  It requires an adaptation of thinking that people who have worked in museums for years may not be able to do initially.  The way to overcome this, I believe, would be to have a balance of newer museum staff that is able to think this way more easily; a strong commitment from the museum team to make this shift; and, baby steps through exhibition design and new programming which utilizes the collections, curators, etc. in new ways.  Successes in culturally centered work will encourage the continued evolution of museum practices[15].

A final impediment is museums’ tendencies to use outside consultants and outsource jobs.  This may impede the process of sharing the most significant information.   “A museum’s board, staff and supporters are potentially the real experts on the organization and what is needed – the challenge is to unlock their tacit knowledge and put it to use.”[16] The staff of a museum may not know how to implement getting more information on the web but they should know what they want on it.  When I had to design the educational webpage for the group exhibition in my Exhibitions class, I thought I would just e-mail my content to the web designer.  No.  I sat with him throughout the entire process to answer questions, clarify things I thought would be obvious, while he implemented, with ease, things I would need training on.  Finding the time, and realizing one must make the time, to work side by side with consultants and contractors to create the best possible communication devices for exhibitions and virtual museum spaces must be done.

“Deep in the soul of any organization that wishes to practice stewardship there must be a profound awareness that the gifts it receives are to be held in trust for the public good.”[17]  As museums shift to expand its acknowledged stakeholders, encourage them to communicate and engage with the museum on more and more levels, then the museum is actually becoming more of what it is meant to be as a steward of public goods.  The collections will grow to include more of what their diverse populations want.  The participating community will have the opportunity to feel increasingly like “experts” in their social history after personal reflection from exhibitions and conversations through social media and face-to-face interactions.

I believe there are many of us who are trying to grasp where we fit in and who we are in this multicultural society wherein the supremacy of the individual overshadows the connections we are capable of feeling in a more collective society.  Museums, by embracing their position within society as trusted, competent keepers and storytellers of cultural heritage, while honoring all of their community members in the mix of their archives and exhibitions, may find that their real power is not in what they know how to do but what they do with what they know.  Just like me and my little stool.  I didn’t know that I may look back and value it so greatly.  It’s just an object.  Museum staff know that nothing is just an object but material parts of our stories – some, extremely painful.  Knowing which ones to keep – even when the community is unaware of their potential meaning – and how to present the stories of our lives together with them, is the art of museum work.

Penny Dodds is a student in the Museum Studies Graduate Certificate Program at the University of Memphis.  She can be reached at pdodds(a)memphis.edu


[1] Robert P. Connolly and Natalye B. Tate.  “Volunteers and Collections as Viewed from the Museum Mission Statement.”  Collections 7, no. 3 (2011): 327.

[2] John Reeve and Caroline Lang, et al., ed.  “Prioritizing Audience Groups” in The Responsive Museum:  Working with Audiences in the Twenty-first Century. (2006): 48.

[3] Beverly Serrell.  Exhibit Labels:  An Interpretive Approach.  (New York:  Alta Mira Press, 1996), 1.

[4] Yani Herreman.  “Display Exhibits and Exhibitions” in Running a Museum: A Practical Handbook. (Paris:  ICOM, 2004): 92.

in ICOM. (2004): 92.

[5]Hugh H. Genoways and Lynne M. Ireland.  “Strategic Planning” in Museum Administration:  An Introduction (Walnut Creek: AltaMira Press, 2003):  81.

[6] Gerald McMaster, “Art History Through the Lens of the Present?”  Journal of Museum Education 34, no.3 (2009): 215.

[7] Lynn Dierking, “Being of Value:  Intentionally Fostering and Documenting Public Value.”  Journal of Museum Education 35, no. 1 (2010): 14.

[8] Sharon MacDonald.  “Expanding Museum Studies: An Introduction” in A Companion to Museum Studies.  (Malden, MA:  Blackwell Publishing, 2006): 4.

[9] Ole Sejer Iversen and Rachel Charlotte Smith.  “Experiences from the Digital Natives Exhibition.” Heritage and Social Media:  Understanding Heritage in a Participating Culture (Routledge, 2012): 127.

[10] Gail Ravnitzky Silberglied.  Speak Up for Museums:  The AAM Guide to Advocacy.  (American Association of Museums, 2011): 49.

[11] Reeve, 47.

[12] Herminia Din and Phyllis Hecht. The Digital Museum:  A Think Guide.  (American Association of Museums, 2007): 63.

[13] Genoways and Ireland, 77.

[14] Douglas Worts, “Measuring Museum Meaning: A Critical Assessment Framework.”  Journal of Museum Education 31,1, (2006): 42.

[15] M. C. Flagler and C. Catlin-Legutko and S. Klinger, ed.  “Interpreting Difficult Issues” in Interpretation:  Education, Programs, and Exhibits, Small Museum Toolbox, Vol.5. (New York: AltaMira Press, 2012): 29.

[16] Robert R. Janes.  Museums in a Troubled World. (Routledge, 2009): 15.

[17] B. Granger, C. Catlin-Legutko and S. Klinger, ed.  “The Good, the Best, and the IRS:  Museum Financial Management Solutions and Recommendations” in Financial Resource Development and Management. Small Museum Toolbox, vol. 2 (New York:  AltaMira Press, 2003): 2.

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