Curatorial Studies and Contemporary Culture

Reciting SitesCultural studies interprets curatorial practice such as how people come to understand and express identities through interactions with spaces, things, and shared social relations in contemporary daily life. This seminar considers the definitions of “to curate” from an act of collecting, arranging, and displaying things for others to understanding curatorial projects that investigate rituals, objects, sites, and events of everyday life and their interplay with identity and cultural politics. Students consider the work of such scholars as Wilson, Golden, Benjamin, Foucault, Gonzalez, and de Certeu. They discuss the usual sites for curatorial work such as museums, galleries, libraries, and botanic gardens, as well as less conventional sites such as food displays, magazines, dorm rooms, websites, music (curating through dj-ing), and video programs.