Introduction to Philosophy and Museums: Essays in the Philosophy of Museums

Abstract

Museums and their practices—especially those involving collection, curation and exhibition—generate a host of philosophical questions. Such questions are not limited to the domains of ethics and aesthetics, but go further into the domains of metaphysics, epistemology and philosophy of religion. Despite the prominence of museums as public institutions, they have until recently received surprisingly little scrutiny from philosophers in the Anglo-American tradition. By bringing together contributions from philosophers with backgrounds in a range of traditional areas of philosophy, this volume demonstrates how their work can enhance our understanding of museums and shed light on the philosophical questions raised by museum practices. Many of the essays in this volume make the case that the philosophy of museums is of vital concern, not only to those philosophers at work in the emerging field but also to practitioners within the museum world and to anyone who enjoys visiting museums.

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Author Profiles

Gary Kemp
University of Glasgow
Victoria S. Harrison
University of Macau
Anna Bergqvist
Manchester Metropolitan University

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