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Negotiating Place, Heritage and Diversity: Young People's Narratives of Belonging and Exclusion in Scotland

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Katherine Lloyd


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© Christopher Whitehead, Katherine Lloyd, Susannah Eckersley and Rhiannon Mason 2015. All rights reserved. Research undertaken at the National Museum of Scotland (NMS) as part of the MeLa project has highlighted the potential for national museums to show both the diversity within nations, and the interconnected relationship between the nation and the wider world, through collections that extend beyond national boundaries (see Chapter 1, this volume; Mason 2013). However, as studies with visitors at NMS have shown, this potential may not necessarily translate into practice. While stories of migration can be found throughout NMS, these may be ignored, forgotten or overlooked by visitors (see Whitehead et al. in the Introduction to this book). Indeed, the active denaturalization of places by museums may lead to the destabilization of place identities, a phenomenon that may lead to discomfort, retrenchment or defensive responses amongst visitors. As such, visitors may actively resist museum strategies to evoke ‘empathy’ with migrant experiences. In this extended chapter, I argue that while museums may strive to represent the fluid nature of identity and facilitate an understanding of the constructed nature of place, within individuals’ daily lives the desire to hold a fixed understanding of place stems from the desire for stability and coherence, as well as the sense of pride that arises from an understanding of place and what it means to belong to that place as ‘unique’. Such feelings are pertinent within the context of rapid globalization and the rise of ‘superdiversity’ (Vertovec 2007).

Publication metadata

Author(s): Lloyd K

Editor(s): Whitehead,C; Lloyd,K; Eckersley,S; Mason,R

Publication type: Book Chapter

Publication status: Published

Book Title: Museums, Migration and Identity in Europe: Peoples, Places and Identities

Year: 2014

Pages: 149-182

Print publication date: 28/04/2015

Acceptance date: 01/01/1900

Publisher: Ashgate

Place Published: Farnham, UK


Library holdings: Search Newcastle University Library for this item

ISBN: 9781472425195