29 October 2010

Call for Papers: MEG Conference 2011

 Words and Objects:Writing on, around and about things

MEG Annual Conference
Pitt Rivers Museum, University of Oxford
Thursday 14 and Friday 15 April 2011

We invite papers from museum ethnographers and others that focus on the analysis of the words written on, around and about museum things; that is, the diverse forms of tangible and virtual documents written about objects including inscriptions, labels, display texts, indexes, catalogues and databases.
We will be interested in papers that explore the role of words in the documentation, interpretation and presentation of objects—both historically and in the present, and in what such analysis tells us about both explicit and implicit aspects of museum practice. Speakers might also want to explore issues relating to translation and transcription which are often key to producing the textual adjuncts to objects.

During the final discussion at 'Making Things' (MEG's 2010 conference at the University of Reading's Museum of English Rural Life), there was an interesting but unresolved discussion about the point of analysing labels and catalogue entries. While some argued that the main point of such work was to throw light on original provenance and thus on indigenous purpose and meanings, others emphasized the value of a focus on old labels and texts for studying the lives of objects in museums. We hope that the 2011 conference will continue and broaden this discussion.

Offers of papers discussing such questions in related fields will also be welcome. As usual, one session of the conference will be devoted to shorter reports on prospective, new, current or recently completed projects of interest to museum ethnographers. Main session papers will be 20 minutes long (with 10 minutes for questions), the shorter reports will be 10 minutes. Outline submissions should include a title, a short description of the paper's contents (no more than 200 words) and name and contact details of the speaker. Submissions should be sent to:

Jeremy Coote
Joint Head of Collections,
Pitt Rivers Museum,
University of Oxford,
South Parks Road,
phone: (44) (0)1865 613005
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
The deadline for submissions is 7 January 2011. Booking for the conference will commence in early January 2011, please go to the Museum Ethnographers Group website for further information http://www.museumethnographersgroup.org.uk/

Please note that all speakers at the conference are required to pay conference fees and that the Museum Ethnographers Group does not have any funds available to meet speakers' expenses

28 October 2010

Peter Gathercole

The Museum Ethnographers Group are very sorry to have to announce the death on 11th October 2010 of Peter Gathercole at the age of 81.

Peter was a founder member of the Group, its first chairman, and an ever-supportive and inspiring colleague. Over the years he wrote a number of papers and reviews for the MEG newsletter and journal and until very recently regularly attended the annual conference; indeed, the twenty-eight conference, hosted by the Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, University of Cambridge in 2004, was held in his honour.

Appreciations of his life and work will be published in the Newsletter and the Journal in due course. An interview with Peter can be seen at: http://www.alanmacfarlane.com/ancestors/gathercole.html

Peter's funeral will be at 1.30pm on Friday 5 November at the Cambridge City Crematorium and afterwards at Darwin College.

RAI: Anthropology of Sport Photo Contest

The Royal Anthropological Institute are looking for photos (black and white or colour) which explore the following themes: 1) Globalisation 2) Identity and 3) The Body

Who can participate?
The competition is open to anyone interested in anthropology, photography and sport.

What do contestants win?
All short-listed and winning contestants will have their work published in RAI educational materials. In addition, for each thematic category a £50 gift voucher will be awarded to the winning photograph.

Deadline for submissions 10th December 2010

 For further information and submission guidelines please visit: www.discoveranthropology.org.uk

Alternatively please find attached to this email:

To get some ideas take a look at the 2010 Water Photo Contest on the flickr page: http://www.flickr.com/photos/raieducation