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HHIK07752U Canceled: HIS 74/75.
History and hegemony: interpretations of the past at heritage sites
and the Use of History (30 ECTS)
Full Degree Master
See Timetable link
Study Board of Archaeology, Ethnology, Greek
& Latin, History
SAXO-Institute - Archaeology, Ethnology, Greek &
Marie Louise Bech Nosch (5-737478686d456d7a7233707a336970)
Jane Anne Malcolm-Davies (15-6d70646f66726f70306764796c6876436b7870316e7831676e)
Saved on the
Historical core area 2: Academic writing with focus on source
analysis (HHIK03741E) and [elective and
constituent] The Use of History
(HHIK03751E) [Curriculum for Master´s Programme in History,
History and hegemony: interpretations of the past at
heritage sites and the Use of History
(HHIK03741E and HHIK03751E)
History is conventionally debated and explored by experts in
scientific papers and scholarly books. For the non-historian, it is
presented as a leisure experience at heritage sites – often without
debate or exploration. In this course, we will focus on five themes
of European history and how museums, historic buildings and other
heritage attractions interpret them. Each of these themes, from
prehistory to the present day, will be explored in two ways:
Lectures and studies: In class, we will examine
and discuss the practice of interpretation at heritage sites
including current hot topics and academic debates to introduce the
most important concepts, scholars and practitioners. Students will
consider scholarly texts and a selection of primary sources in
order to cultivate an understanding of the interpretive process
including identifying sources, editing material, devising
narratives and illustrating them. The course will also introduce
visitor studies to explore the relationship between interpretive
design and the perceived audience. The course will consist of
lectures by the two course leaders, guest lectures by international
experts, student presentations and group work sessions. Students
are expected to read 50-100 pages each week in preparation for
classroom discussions and field work.
Field work: On day trips in and around Copenhagen,
we will examine how each theme is presented in exhibits and
displays at museums and historic buildings. Students will review
exhibition texts, interpretive priorities, storylines and other
narratives, and the physical presentation of archaeological and
historical evidence. Other sources include the official catalogues,
websites and other publications which will be compared with
informal reviews and comments from online reviews and blogs.
Students will also conduct interviews with museum curators and
heritage site managers, when possible. After each visit, we expect
all students to deliver a report in which they discuss the
exhibition or site’s historical context and analyse how archaeology
and/or history are represented in the interpretive choices made by
the designers and/or curators.
Student workshop: In the last week of the
semester, we will together host a workshop in which all students
will present summaries of their reports and an international panel
will provide feedback.
Research project associated this course: Students
will participate in a research project Copenhagen’s Textile
Trails by devising ways in which material currently available
for visitors at a range of heritage sites can be brought together
to develop an interpretive experience based on the theme of dress,
clothing and fabric. Coursework, lectures, in-class studies, field
trips, and assignments will focus on this overarching theme with
the aim of producing ideas and material which identifies,
highlights, and explains Danish textile heritage to domestic and
The course takes place over full day at KUA every alternate week
and over a full day at a different heritage site every other week.
We invite students to plan a personal schedule, including
transportation time for the field trips.
We have chosen themes and exhibitions which reflect our interests
and current debates. These themes are also highly relevant for
those who wish to teach in high school.
We plan to focus on the following themes:
1. The prehistory of Denmark: Methodologies for investigating the
evidence. How do archaeologists and historians characterise
resources, communities and gender?
Guest lecture by Dr Ulla Mannering, National Museum of Denmark.
Glyn Daniel, The idea of prehistory (1963)
2. The interpretation of the world: the Mediterranean as a concept,
in antiquity and in the early modern era.
How do ancient views of cartography influence our understanding of
southern Europe today?
Guest lecture by Dr Maria Papadopoulou, Marie Slodowska Curie
Reading - Fernand Braudel, chapters from La Méditerranée et le
Monde Méditerranéen a l'époque de Philippe II, 3 vols
(1949)/The Mediterranean and the Mediterranean World in the Age
of Philip II (1972-73).
3. Royal palaces and sovereign style: the communication of power.
How did monarchs use their residences to convey authority and how
is that reflected in their presentation today?
Guest lecture by Sidsel Frisch, masters graduate in royal
Reading - Eric Hobsbawm & Terence Ranger, The Invention of
4. Denmark’s commerce, consumption and colonialism: Global trade in
the 18th century. How does import and export history
underpin the interpretation of Danish domesticity?
Guest lecture by Corinne Thépaut-Cabasset, Marie Slodowska Curie
Reading – Karl Marx, Das Kapital (1867)
5. Denmark through dress: the threads of history.
How can textiles create a narrative for Denmark’s historical
development to the present day?
Guest lecture by Susanne Klose, masters graduate in museum
Reading – Roland Barthes, Mythologies (1957)
Teaching and Learning Methods: This course is
taught in English. Discussions in class as well as student
presentations and coursework will be in English. We will upload all
relevant weekly readings on Canvas. We expect you to read at least
a hundred pages of primary and secondary literature (scholarly
texts and sources) per week. We will also expect you to give
several shorter and longer presentations in class on a topic of our
choice. We will assess your performance according to a list of
evaluation criteria that are necessary in the craft of scientific
work (this list will also be available to you via Canvas). We
expect you to attend and participate actively in all classes,
because we will work through a substantial part of the syllabus in
class. In the week before semester starts, we would like to
interview you in person about your study plans, skills and
ambitions. You will receive a personal invitation via Canvas.
Course objectives (clarification of some of the
objectives stipulated in the curriculum):
After the course students will be able to:
• identify and describe some of the important primary sources for
exploring a series of themes in Danish history and demonstrate the
capacity to work with them critically
• demonstrate a clear understanding of the methodologies and
difficulties in handling a range of sources and assess their
validity and quality
• develop a hands-on approach in the assessment, selection and use
• critically review secondary literature from different scholarly
traditions and contextualise it
• develop and describe a new perspective on heritage interpretation
• cultivate and describe an insight into heritage interpretation
traditions in Denmark – in permanent and contemporary exhibitions,
historic buildings and museum collections
• meet and become acquainted with the work and perspectives of
Danish museum curators and heritage site directors
• identify the seminal theoretical and methodological approaches to
presenting archaeology and history, and participate in contemporary
debates on heritage interpretation
• read and critically review scholarly papers and presentations
• prepare and present a working paper using a scholarly approach
• participate in group discussions in class
• reflect critically and concisely on scholarly
- National museums and nation-building in Europe, 1750-2010:
Mobilization and legitimacy, continuity and change. Eds.: P.
Aronsson & G. Elgenius. London: Routledge, 2015.
- A. Bounia m.fl.: Voices from the museum: Qualitative research
conducted in Europe’s national museums. Linköping: Linköping
University Press, 2012.
in full text]
- J. Diamond, M. Horn & D. Uttal: Practical Evaluation
Guide: Tools for Museums and Other Informal Educational
Settings, Rowman & Littlefield, 2016 (3rd edition).
- J. Dodd & C. Jones: Mind, body, spirit: How museums
impact health and wellbeing. Leicester: Research Centre for
Museums and Galleries, 2014.
in full text]
- J. H. Falk & L. Dierking: The museum experience
revisited. Walnut Creek, CA: Left Coast Press, 2013.
- D. Lowenthal: The past is a foreign country: revisited,
Cambridge University Press, 2015 (2nd edition).