Envisaging Tribal Culture and Decoding Anthropological Museums
This chapter presents a syncretic tradition of interaction between indigenous and other communities through museum exhibits. Indigenous cultures as diverse as they are, from primitive hunter-gatherers and pastoralists to industrial city dwellers and in terms of diverse life styles tribal, folk and urban, find a proper place in museum. The diversity is often depicted as an integrated pattern of culture in which all the varying forms of cultural life fit like pieces in a mosaic. But for an average Indian, it is difficult to visualize elements of unity in an apparently divergent cultural milieu spread over length and breadth of the country. Under such a situation, museums play a significant role by providing a platform for interaction and education of the society at large and by disseminating the knowledge of biological and cultural aspects of humankind from prehistoric to contemporary times. The discussion in this chapter depicts such a dynamic role of museums. Precisely, present chapter is an attempt to highlight the different dimensions of anthropological museum and how it is useful for envisaging and preserving the tribal culture and their heritage.
KeywordsAnthropological museum Ethnographic and museum collections Cultural heritage and diversity Preservation of cultural heritage Exhibition Documentation Dissemination
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