This coursework invites you to explore how history of science is best displayed and interpreted for a broad audience, in this case through museum exhibits, while remaining convincing to academic history of science experts.
1) Visit the Science Museum’s Making the Modern World gallery. Study the design of the gallery space (pay attention to the organization of the side walls, the mezzanine, and the iconic objects in the middle, as well as chronology). Take notes and pictures. Think about how the objects, and their interpretation, contribute to an overall story about the development of science and technology.
2) Read Peter Bowler and Iwan Morus, Making Modern Science: a Historical Survey, Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2005. Take structured notes.
You are the curator of a new exhibition on science in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. You have been asked to come up with a design of an exhibition that will use ten objects to illustrate this history. What objects will you choose, and how will you guide their interpretation?
You have no financial constraints (so any object can be bought, borrowed or even made), but there is limited space. You have been allocated a large gallery space, 100 metres by 100 metres.
Write and draw a design for your exhibition. It must include the following:
1) A list of ten objects to be displayed.
2) A plan of the exhibition: a drawing that shows how the objects will be arranged to guide visitors and interpretation.
3) An essay that interprets the objects in terms of 19th and the 20th century history and history of science, drawing on secondary literature……………….
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