“What is this thing we call Public History?” asked David Blight (albeit rhetorically) in the closing presentation to the panel entitled, “History, Preservation, and Public Reckoning in Museums.” One simple way of answering that question is to demarcate the terrain and to say that Public History is the practice of producing historical narratives in places outside of the classroom and texts of academia, such as museums and monuments, historic sites and the built environment, the digital...
Saturday, May 2101:40 - 03:25 PM
History, Preservation, and Public Reckoning in Museums
Panelists will explore the ongoing tension between historical scholarship and public culture, not only on the plantation, but also in the broader context of public history and memory. The session will reflect on the challenges of interpreting emancipation at house museums and the reactions of the public, including the descendants of the slave owners as well as the enslaved.