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Joukowsky Institute for Archaeology



Joukowsky Institute for Archaeology & the Ancient World
Brown University
Box 1837 / 60 George Street
Providence, RI 02912
Telephone: (401) 863-3188
Fax: (401) 863-9423

  Weekly Schedule|Assignments|Grading|Readings|NOTES, NEWS and LINKS| Readings

CAVEAT - The current schedule is tentative and the dates of guest speakers and museum visits may change ----

Note: All readings should be done before the class for which they are assigned.

Week 1 (Jan. 28)


Introduction to the World of Museums

What the class is all about and what to expect

Short History of Museums—What we think of when we think of museums, museums without walls, what defines a museum (for example: Roman temples with statues as museums,  Alexandria’s Library as a museum)

No Readings Assigned.

In Class We will watch We Love Museums to they love us back, with pinky and kim

Week 2 (Feb. 4)

Logistics: what is a museum?

Museum mission statements, who makes up a museum and how it is organized, issues of curatorial authority, and questions of the subjectivity of display.  

Night at the Museum class discussion


Assignment due Feb.4th

Week 3 (Feb. 11)

Laws and Loans: Acquisitions

Antiquity Trade, Partage, Loans,  the “Hot Pot”


Read for Feb. 11:  

Philadelphia Declaration

Week 4 (Feb. 18)

What is the “traditional” museum?

Virtual museum class discussion, Anthropology and Museums, visit to Annmary Brown Memorial and Manning Chapel  with Steve Lubar

DUE: Virtual Museum Review

read for Feb.18

The Virtual Museum:

Week 5 (Feb.25)

Laws and Loans: Repatriation

The Great Debate and NAGPRA

Read for Feb 25.


Week 6 (Mar. 4)

Display of The Sacred I: Introduction and the display of Egyptian Sacred Artifacts

Introduction to the study of religious objects on display in museums (ancient vs. contemporary religions); Museums as sacred spaces

The display Egyptian sacred artifacts, 'issues and controversies of the display of mummies'

Read for Mar. 4

Art Museum as Sacred or Secular Space?

Egyptian Religious Artifacts

Week 7 (Mar. 11)

Visit to Boston Museum of Fine Arts with Phoebe  Segal, Curatorial Research Associate

Week 8 (Mar. 18)

Visit to RISD museum with Gina Borromeo, Curator of Ancient Art

Week 9 (Mar. 25th) NO CLASS: Instructor Away

Students will schedule individual meetings with instructor to discuss their final projects during the week of March 14-18 or the week of April 4-8th


Week 10 (April 1st)   NO CLASS, SPRING BREAK

Week 11 (April 8th)

Display of the Sacred II: Greek and Roman Religious Artifacts

Temples as museums, sacrality of ancient art, ancient views of museums and collecting

Read for Apr. 8:  

Ancient Galleries Described


Elsner, Jas. (1996) “Image and Ritual: Reflections on the Religious Appreciation of Classical Art”. Classical Quarterly (1996): 515-531

Week 12 (Apr. 15)

Display of the Sacred III: Indian Religious Artifacts

Display of religions that are still practiced.

Case Studies: Museums in the East vs. Museums in the West

Read for Apr. 15:

Guest Discussant: Elizabeth Cecil

Week 13 (Apr. 22)

The Display of the Sacred IV: Byzantine and Medieval Religious Artifacts

Display of religions that are still practiced, holy relics and reliquaries, museums within churches, sacred collections.

Read for Apr. 22:  

Week 14 (Apr. 29) ''Last class

final poster presentations

final paper due