Indigenous or Alter-Native Forms of Cultural Display

  • Joy Hendry


In this chapter we turn away from the point of view of tourists and museum visitors to look at some examples of what Indigenous people, given a free reign, choose to do themselves in representing and dis­playing their culture. In the last chapter, we saw some cases of self-representation, but these were linked to raising funds through tourism and entertainment. If the resources were otherwise available, would people really care about putting their culture on display to outsiders? Indeed, would they want to be on display at all? In the first chapter, we saw some of the political associations of cultural display, often demeaning to the people whose objects were on show, representing their past, and until recently ignoring their continuing existence. To invite members of the cultures represented to advise on these displays was a step in the direction of recognizing them and we also intro­duced one or two examples of museums founded and run by Indigenous people themselves. In this chapter we turn to examine in more detail some of the things that happen when Indigenous people reclaim control.


Indigenous People Residential School Museum Visitor Queen Charlotte Island Indigenous Form 
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References And Further Readings

  1. Bolton, L., 1997, “A Place Containing many Places: Museums and the Use of Objects to Represent Place in Melanesia,” The Australian Journal of Anthropology, 8(1): 18–34.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Bolton, L., 1999, “Radio and the Redefinition of Kastom in Vanuatu,” The Contemporary Pacific, 11(2): 335–360.Google Scholar
  3. Clifford, James, 1991, “Four Northwest Coast Museums,” in Ivan Karp and Steven D. Lavine (eds.), Exhibiting Cultures: The Poetics and Politics of Museum Display, Washington, DC: Smithsonian Institution Press, pp. 212–254.Google Scholar
  4. Collison, Nika, 2002, “Communicating Who We Are: The Qay’llnagaay Heritage Centre Preliminary Content Development Report, Phase 1,” Qay’llnagaay Heritage Centre Society.Google Scholar
  5. Eoe, S.M. and P. Swadling (eds.), 1991, Centres in the Pacific, Port Moresby: Papua New Guinea National Museum.Google Scholar
  6. Evalucan, 1978, “Evaluation of the Cultural/Educational Centres Programme,” Calgary, prepared for the Department of Indian and Inuit Affairs.Google Scholar
  7. For Us to Decide: Our Culture, Our Survival, Our Future,“ A Report on the Findings of Consultation on Indian Control of the Cultural Education Centres Program, presented by the National Committee of the Indian Cultural Education Centres, March 1982.Google Scholar
  8. Graham, Elizabeth, 1997, The Mush Hole: Life at Two Indian Residential Schools, Waterloo: Heffle Publishing.Google Scholar
  9. Hendry, Charles E., 1998, Beyond Traplines, Toronto: The Anglican Book Centre.Google Scholar
  10. Jonaitis, Aldona (ed.), 1991, Chiefly Feasts: The Enduring Kwakiutl Potlatch, New York: American Museum of Natural History.Google Scholar
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  12. Stanley, Nick, 1998 Being Ourselves for You: The Global Display of Cultures, London: Middlesex University Press.Google Scholar
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Copyright information

© Joy Hendry 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Joy Hendry

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