Roger Cooter and Claudia Stein’s presentation at the conference on “Contemporary medical science and technology as a challenge to museums” in Copenhagen last month was about the politics of knowledge production, with medical museums as a case study.
One of Roger’s arguments was that the museums, by placing their historical objects in new, global contexts, overlook the original local meanings and the conflicts involved. The museum ought instead to face the political implications of the objects and urge the visitors to take a stand.
Claudia made that point that aesthetics is never neutral; as products of political struggles of decision-making, aesthetics should help provoke such the discussion about such struggles among museum visitors.
Read Claudia and Roger’s full abstract here.
The discussion afterwards continued the debate on how aesthetics and politics are linked together. There were comments from Adam Bencard, Anette Stenslund, Silvia Casini, Lucy Lyons, Morten Skydsgaard, Nurin Veis, Max Liljefors and Wendy Atkinson.