Museum for the Global Majority: Expanding the limits of museum practice

Session Convenors:

Jennifer Reynolds-Kaye (Yale Center for British Art)

Maryam Ohadi-Hamadani (Yale Center for British Art)

Please email your paper proposal to the session convenors using the Paper Proposal Form


Restructuring methodologies and practices that can liberate the art museum from its colonial past is ever more urgent in the wake of our current global environment. Traditional museums are receptacles for the material traces of culture, and are inextricably linked to our pasts; in our present, they are the narrators and educators of this history. But what past and present moments are represented in the museum, in its exhibition and collecting practices?

The ‘past conditional temporality’ of ‘what could have been,’ as Lisa Lowe writes, ‘symbolizes aptly the space of a different kind of thinking, a space of productive attention to the scene of loss, a thinking with twofold attention that seeks to encompass at once the positive objects and methods of history and social science, and also the matters absent, entangled and unavailable by its methods.’ Is it possible to exceed or negotiate the constitutive limits of the museum? What counter-models and counter-histories might we use to rethink the museum as a space for community and inclusivity when its foundation is predicated on rendering certain histories and viewpoints as absent or othered? How might the museum share narrative authority and agency with historically underrepresented or unrepresented communities?

We welcome contributions from scholars, artists, museum educators and curators that offer methodological and practical methods for decolonising the museum. This session is also open to ways of decolonising the very premise of a ‘panel’ of experts, and looks for participants willing to co-create spaces of open dialogue, problem-solving, and imaginative experimentation.

Submit a paper

Please email your paper proposals direct to the session convenors above, using the Paper Proposal Form

You need to provide a title and abstract (250 words maximum) for a 25-minute paper (unless otherwise specified), your name and institutional affiliation (if any).

Please make sure the title is concise and reflects the contents of the paper because the title is what appears online, in social media and in the printed programme.

You should receive an acknowledgement receipt of your submission within two weeks from the session convenors.

Deadline for submissions: Monday 21 October 2019

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