Alfred Deakin Research Institute


The 10,000 Mile-long Mirror

Fri, 02 May 2014 12:22:00 +1000

At this public lecture, Dr Richard Rabinowitz, President of American History Worskshop, will reflect on the experience of exploring Australia’s museum culture, a process he has found most useful in making him aware of the distinctiveness of his own approach and that of his compatriots in the US. In this paper, he will ruminate on the differences between American and Australian museum cultures, focusing in particular on differences in national attitudes and practices in public history, pedagogy, institutional politics and financing. Key themes he will be addressing include:

  • WHAT, PRECISELY, IS THE SUBJECT OF HISTORY? - realizing the power of museums to engage visitors as kinesthetic (embodied) and socially enmeshed learners
  • EXPERIENCE VS. INFORMATION - themes vs. stories; showing off what WE know
  • IS THERE AN AUSTRALIAN CUISINE? - the radical disengagement in the US from national narratives, and the contrast with Australia
  • THE REAL STUFF [collection objects, sites] AND THE "OTHER" STUFF - the interpretive toolbox as an equal focal-point of visitor attentiveness

Please join the Cultural Heritage Centre for Asia and the Pacific and the Alfred Deakin Research Institute for what should be a stimulating and informative discussion with contributions from local practitioners as well.

Date: Monday 5th May 2014
Time: 5.30-7pm
Location: Deakin City Centre, 550 Burke Street, Level 3.
RSVP: Professor Andrea Witcomb on

Numbers are limited so please RSVP before Monday the 5th of May.

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A rare opportunity to engage with one of America's leading Historians.

Deakin University acknowledges the traditional land owners of present campus sites.

19th July 2012