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SmithsonianNMAI

(Re)Presenting America: Culturally Specific Museums

Thoughtful people ask whether the proliferation of museums dedicated to particular experiences or cultures contributes to the "balkanization" of the United States. Others observe that traditional museums have not represented our country's people and their achievements as fully as they should be. Ethnic/culturally specific museums, they note, provide different portals into what it means to be an American, and their programs provide depth and fullness of perspective, enriching our national narrative. These are serious questions that the Smithsonian seeks to address in a comprehensive, insightful way. By presenting various facets of the existence and practices of "ethnic/culturally specific" museums at the Smithsonian and elsewhere, this special symposium advances a vital discussion of a challenging subject.
Thoughtful people ask whether the proliferation of museums dedicated to particular experiences or cultures contributes to the "balkanization" of the United States. Others observe that traditional museums have not represented our country&...
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