Issues in Museums presents and discusses current political and social issues, which may unexpectedly and sometimes problematically, affect museum practice, particularly in the public areas of exhibition, programming, and publications. Students complete assignments designed to develop professional ability to deal with emerging debates in the museum profession and the knowledge of the impact of politics and the mass culture on museum policies and practices.
The topic for 2010′s Issues in Museums course was The Collector: Teetering Between Mastery and Madness. We critically examined the role of the individual collectors and their relationships with museums.
The topic for 2011′s Issues in Museums course was Civic Identity in an Age of Pluralism. What roles do museums play in creating, reinforcing, and/or challenging individual or group senses of identity in a pluralist age? How do museums create or reflect socialized norms with respect to history, art, culture, and knowledge?