Public memories and private tastes: the shifting definitions of museums and their visitors in the UK

Gayle McPherson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

There is no doubt that museums now operate in a distinctly different market to those of the past. Rottenberg [Rottenberg, B. (2002). Museums, information and the public sphere. Museum International, 54(4), 21–28] identifies the two major trends in museums in the latter years of the 20th century as being ‘the prevalence of a new market-orientated ideology that stressed the importance of revenue generation’ and ‘the introduction of new technologies that transfixed not only the museum profession, but also the world’. The main impact, which these and other changes have had is the revision of the museum into a setting for recreational experiences [Foley, M. and McPherson, G. (2000). Museums as leisure. International Journal of Heritage Studies 16(2), 161–174; Stephen, A. (2001). The contemporary museum and leisure: Recreation as a museum function. Museum Management and Curatorship 19(3), 297–308], rather than an educative one. This paper attempts to address some of these shifts in ideology and purpose.

Original languageEnglish
JournalMuseum Management and Curatorship
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2006

Keywords

  • museum studies

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