Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Arts and Heritage Policy Beyond the National Frame

MUA Editorial Board Member Kinsey Katchka has organized one of the numerous promising museum anthropology-related panels for the American Anthropological Association meetings next week. She notes that the AAA program book editors left one of the panel's discussants, Ivan Karp, off the published list of participants. She writes, in correspondence with me: "Because his comments promise to be insightful (along with those of Mary Jo Arnoldi, who is included on the printed program), I thought it would be worth circulating the complete listing to the MUA list so that those with a special interest in the topic would be aware of the full program."

The full panel information is given below:

Wednesday, November 28, 2007
2:00 PM -3:45 PM

Organizer & Chair
Kinsey Katchka, North Carolina Museum of Art


John Lukavic US Indian Policy & the Marginalization of Competing Forms of Nationalism

Hjorleifur Jonsson Global Futures in Local Pasts: Post-Cold War Museum Prospecting

Sangmee Bak Imagining & Appropriating the GLobal: Gangneung Danoje & the Interplay of Local Identity, National Culture & Global Recognition in Korea

Kinsey Katchka 'Heritage Comes from the Past': Cultural policy rhetoric & the problem of contemporary arts in Francophone Africa

Mary Jo Arnoldi Discussant

Ivan Karp Discussant


Cultural policy addressing the arts and heritage has often been manifested through museums, exhibitions, and institutions, as well as in the creative process itself. In the newly independent African states of the 1960s, for example, national museums constituted significant legitimating markers as countries engaged in a global community on unprecedented terms, and in many cases artists enjoyed strong support by the state. Since then, nationalism has provided a framework for much of the scholarship addressing cultural policy and creative practice in and about Africa, as it has in other parts of the world.

However, with the increasingly fluid nature of global-transnational experience and proliferation of cultural institutions operating outside national frameworks, the nation state as an organizing principle for scholarship and practice proves insufficient. Addressing many world regions, papers in this panel problematize this nationalist approach arts & culture in post-colonies by probing complexities in the rapidly changing contemporary global environment fraught with cross- and intra-cultural tensions, and offering alternative ways to conceptualize the intersection of policy and practice: that is, the convergence of the arts and contingent institutional, political and practical domains in which socio-economic disparities are brought into relief and, perhaps, redressed.

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