<< YCBA Home Yale Center for British Art Yale Center for British Art << YCBA Home

YCBA Collections Search

IIIF Actions
Turner, Hannah, 1986–
Cataloguing culture : legacies of colonialism in museum documentation / Hannah Turner.
Vancouver, BC ; Toronto : UBC Press, [2020]
Physical Description:
xiii, 243 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
Reference Library
GN406 .T87 2020 (LC)
Accessible in the Reference Library [Hours]
Note: Please contact the Reference Library to schedule an appointment [Email ycba.reference@yale.edu]

Includes bibliographical references (pages 216-227) and index.
Issued also in electronic format.
"How does material culture become data? Why does this matter, and for whom? As the cultures of Indigenous peoples in North America were mined for scientific knowledge, years of organizing, classifying, and cataloguing--hardened into accepted categories, naming conventions, and tribal affiliations --much of it wrong. Cataloguing Culture examines how colonialism operates in museum bureaucracies. Using the Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History as her reference, Hannah Turner organizes her study by the technologies framing museum work over 200 years: field records, the ledger, the card catalogue, the punch card, and eventually the database. She examines how categories were applied to ethnographic material culture and became routine throughout federal collecting institutions. As Indigenous communities encounter the documentary traces of imperialism while attempting to reclaim what is theirs, this timely work shines a light on access to and return of cultural heritage."-- Provided by publisher.
Subject Terms:
ART / Museum Studies.
Cataloging of archival materials -- Case studies.
Cataloging of archival materials.
Cataloging of special collections in libraries -- Case studies.
Cataloging of special collections in libraries.
Ethnological museums and collections -- Case studies.
Ethnological museums and collections.
Indians of North America -- Material culture -- Case studies.
Indians of North America -- Material culture.
Museums -- Collection management -- Case studies.
Museums -- Collection management.
Museums and Indians -- Case studies.
Museums and Indians.
National Museum of Natural History (U.S.)
National Museum of Natural History (U.S.) -- Case studies.
Case studies.

  • Writing Desiderata: Defining Evidence in the Field
  • On the Margins: Paper Systems of Classification
  • Ordering Devices and Indian Files: Cataloguing Ethnographic Specimens
  • Pragmatic Classification: The Routine Work of Description After 1950
  • Object, Specimen, Data: Computerization and the Legacy of Dirty Data.