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Advanced Critical Museology


Admission requirements

  • Bachelor’s degree obtained;

  • Admission to the Research Master Archaeology programme.


Building on a tradition of ‘critical museology’, this course seeks to provoke students into questioning what a museum is and does, and what it can be. The aim of this course is to familiarise you with the main current debates within critical museology, exploring topics such as the politics of representation and self-representation, the potential for social and historical criticism embedded in museum practices, claims to repatriation, new modes of exhibition-making, the critical perspective of audiences, communities and the nation-state, among others.

Classes will explore recent controversial cases in the museum world. By the end of the term, you are expected to have gained critical insight into the different aspects involved in museum practices and to be able to apply these ideas and perspectives to contemporary cases.

Set-up of the course

2 hours of lectures, followed by discussion.

Course objectives

  • Equip students with an understanding and a working appreciation of both theoretical and practical approaches to key issues in the field of museum anthropology and museum studies;

  • Ability to discuss and debate the concept and functions of the museum;

  • Demonstrate a familiarity with, and express informed opinions about, current museological debates;

  • Employ theoretically-informed perspectives to critically discuss established and innovative museological practices.


Course schedule details can be found in the RMA and RMSc time schedule.

Mode of instruction

  • Lecture;

  • Discussions;

  • Workshop;

  • Museum visit.

Course load

The course load will be distributed as follows:

  • 14 hours of lectures (1 ec);

  • 250 pages of literature (2 ec);

  • Written assignments (1 ec);

  • Final paper (= exhibition review) (1 ec).

Assessment method

  • Final paper (exhibition review) (60%);

  • Written assignments combined (40%).

There will be one final result.
A retake of the final paper is allowed only if all assignments have been submitted, there is no retake of the assignments.
Assignments do not have to be a pass; the final paper does.

All exam dates (exams, retakes, paper deadlines etc.) can be found in the RMA and RMSc examination schedule.
The exhibition review is due March 25, 2020 (week 13).

Reading list

To be announced at the beginning of the course.


Registration via uSis is mandatory.

  • The Administration Office will register all BA1 students for their tutorials (not lectures; register via uSis!).

  • BA2, BA3, MA/MSc and RMA/RMSc students are required to register for all lectures and tutorials well in time.

  • The Administration Office registers all students for their exams, students are not required to do this in uSis.


For more information about this course, please contact dr. M. (Mariana) de Campos Françozo.


Compulsory attendance.