News & events > The Role of National Museums in (Re)Negotiating National Identity
11 Feb 2016 - 12 Feb 2016

The Role of National Museums in (Re)Negotiating National Identity

The Role of National Museums in Renegotiating National Identity 3 On 11 and 12 February 2016, the Chester Beatty Library, Dublin, Ireland, an ASEMUS member, will hold its Annual Lecture and a Symposium entitled "The Role of National Museums in (Re)Negotiating National Identity". Involving Irish and international speakers, the Symposium reflects on the changes experienced by Ireland in recent decades: the once homogenous national culture of Ireland in the twentieth century now co-exists as one strand of a multicultural fabric. This multiculturalism now opens new debates about culture and identity. One hundred years on from the Easter Rising, do the national museums in Ireland truly reflect Irish identity in 2016? In this context, the Symposium aims to reflect on the origins of Ireland's museums and the narratives that they promote; ask whether they are relevant to Irish citizens today; and suggest what might improve in the future. Speakers include Fionnuala Croke, Director of the Chester Beatty Library and Chair of ASEMUS; Alan Chong, Director of the Asian Civilisations Museum, Singapore, and Vice-Chair of ASEMUS; Peter Aronsson, Vice-Rector for Societal Engagement at the Linnaeus University, Sweden; Pat Cooke, Director MA Programme, School of Art, History and Cultural Policy, University College Dublin; Elizabeth Crooke, Professor of Museum and Heritage Studies, University of Ulster; Alan Kirwan, Learning and Education Co-ordinator for the House of European History, European Parliament; Jenny Siung, Head of Education, Chester Beatty Library; Sheila Watson, Programme Director, Heritage and Interpretation, School of Museum Studies, University of Leicester; and Raghnall O'Floinn, Director of the National Museum of Ireland. The Symposium on "The Role of National Museum in (Re)Negotiating National Identity" will be held on 12 February. The previous day, the Chester Beatty Library will hold its Annual Lecture, delivered by James Cuno, President and CEO of the J. Paul Getty Trust. Entitled "Memory, Nostalgia, Meaning: Identity Politics and Cultural Heritage", the lecture will explore the sources and implications of identity politics and cultural heritage, and the manipulation of the latter in pursuit of the former. For additional information about both activities, please visit