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Title: Analysis of presentations at selected museums and centres with a Romano-British to late-Medieval period theme
Authors: Maloney, Michael James Martin.
Award date: 2000
Presented at: University of Leicester
Abstract: The purpose of this thesis is to identify key trends in presentations which contribute decisively to a greater understanding of the Romano-British to Late Medieval period. An in-depth review of theories and critiques introduced the academic debate on the relationship between the past and the present. The fundamental premise of a public interest in the past was established, as was the justification of the need to pursue research which explains that interest. A presentational template of the Jorvik Viking Centre was then constructed, on which to consider other forms of presentation, and to appraise its role as a pioneer and exemplar in this field. The suitability of conducting questionnaires in order to obtain the most accurate and consistent form of visitor responses to to selected presentations was verified. The technique was explained, with enclosed sample copies of the questionnaires. The results were then displayed, in the form of data relating to permanent presentations and resultant visitor trends, followed by more specific case studies of enactments and educational facilities. After ascertaining the managerial responses, and the significance of the Jorvik Viking Centre as a role model for their presentations, a focussed assessment of the 1993 commemoration of the 1950th anniversary of the Roman Invasion of Britain was made. This case-study incorporated elements from the previously considered themes, and was discussed in some depth as a comparative, in order to give a perspective upon the overall theme. A broad overview of the results and their implications was then made, and placed in the context of relevant contemporary visitor surveys. Finally, proposals for further initiatives were made. It has been established that the concept of the past as a resource is valid, as is the necessity of identifying the public with which a presentational dialogue is sought. An objective assessment of innovative and experimental presentations is also seen to be of merit. In this case-study, it is shown that it is the innovative presentations which tend to be popularly approved, and which also contribute to a sense of community and museum/visitor cooperation. The existing development plans are accepted, and there is an expectation of being able to participate in presentational activities. Such trends are also noticeable in result trends relating to enactments and educational presentations. The Jorvik Viking Centre is shown to have only a generally minimal influence. Despite overall presentational flaws in the Roman anniversary commemoration, it sets an example of individual achievement. Apart from advocating further research into presentations, case-studies with future potential are also considered, as is the concept of utilising the Annales system to this end.
Type: Thesis
Level: Doctoral
Qualification: PhD
Rights: Copyright © the author. All rights reserved.
Appears in Collections:Theses, School of Museum Studies
Leicester Theses

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