Dis/ordered assemblages of disability in museums

Authored by: Janice Rieger , Megan Strickfaden

The Routledge Handbook of Disability Arts, Culture, and Media

Print publication date:  December  2018
Online publication date:  December  2018

Print ISBN: 9780815368410
eBook ISBN: 9781351254687
Adobe ISBN:


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Museums are spaces of power and care. They are institutions that present assemblages (Deleuze & Guattari 2002), which are reconstructions and representations of history and societal values, and thus are partial realities that curate human existence. These assemblages cannot ever represent the totality of human existence because it is never possible to do so, and yet these assemblages are embedded with power because choices are made about what ought or ought not be represented within museums (Ott 2013; Bennet 2017). The nature of partial realities is that, at their centre, these are still representations that tell stories of what one would imagine to be the most significant events related to a place (nation, city), with a particular focus on a societal event or issue (war, art, sports, nature, human rights, etc.) and peoples (e.g. immigrants, migrants, First Nations or Indigenous peoples, etc.).

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