(Re)visiting the industrial past : representation and meaning at Nova Scotia's museum of industry

Jack, Meghann E. (Meghann Elizabeth) (2010) (Re)visiting the industrial past : representation and meaning at Nova Scotia's museum of industry. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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Abstract

This thesis examines questions of representation and meaning at the Museum of Industry, a part of the Nova Scotia Museum, located in Stellarton, Nova Scotia. An ethnographic approach to studying a museum, it views the Museum of Industry as a social space wherein the perspectives of cultural producers and cultural consumers are considered. The museum space - the displays, texts, and objects of the exhibits - is also considered in this approach. The Museum of Industry produces narratives of industrial, technological, and social achievement to historically validate a post-industrial province. Portrayals of an ascent to industrial success, and later, adaptability in the wake of industrial decline, serve as a reminder of previous economic strength and current viability, dispelling regional stereotypes and re-describing Nova Scotia as an industrial place, both worthwhile and competent. The Museum of Industry focuses on interpreting the past through identifiable human characters and interactive, engaging exhibits so that visitors encounter the past in a personalized way. Lastly, museum visitors are active rather than passive consumers of Nova Scotia's industrial heritage, making meaning through the way they put to use or relate industrial heritage representations in their own lives. The study contributes to an understanding of how the industrial past is represented, and what the public consumes, within the Nova Scotia heritage world.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
URI: http://research.library.mun.ca/id/eprint/8724
Item ID: 8724
Additional Information: Includes bibliographical references (leaves 176-181).
Department(s): Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of > Folklore
Date: 2010
Date Type: Submission
Geographic Location: Canada--Nova Scotia
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Nova Scotia Museum--Museum of Industry; Industrial museums--Social aspects--Nova Scotia; Industries--Nova Scotia--History; Nova Scotia--Civilization

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