Professionally speaking, I, like many interpreters, was raised on Freeman Tilden’s second principle of interpretation. It reads: ‘Information, as such, is not Interpretation. Interpretation is revelation based upon information. But they are entirely different things. However, all interpretation includes information.’  So when I started my field research, having conversations with visitors at sites in … Continue reading Interpretation is Information
Tag: 1066 Battle of Hastings
The Road to Hell
Ferguson  has reminded me of a saying I learnt in the US: ‘The road to hell is paved with good intentions’. I think this applies to interpretation, and heritage management more generally, also. Our literature and our conferences are full of suggestions of interpreters’ inherent good will, and the positive outcome this is supposed … Continue reading The Road to Hell
Qualified Teacher Status: A Requirement for Museum Educators?
In a piece on The Conversation UK earlier this month, Jacqueline Baxter of The Open University argues that all teachers should have Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) . Her piece reminded me of the fact that in many museums, QTS is the required qualification for museum educators – the people that deliver the programmes for schools. … Continue reading Qualified Teacher Status: A Requirement for Museum Educators?
Marking Place – The Role of Interpretation
I spent yesterday at the Battle of Hastings site . They had a big event on to mark the upcoming anniversary of the battle, and at some point during the day, people laid down wreaths at the Harold Stone – the stone marking the place where King Harold is said to have fallen . It … Continue reading Marking Place – The Role of Interpretation
Objects don’t equal objectivity, or: The pitfalls of object-driven interpretation
Last week I was back in Germany finishing up the visitor interviews at Museum und Park Kalkriese for my doctorate research. One interview in particular struck a note with me. A visitor was very upset about what they felt was a major lack of balanced representation. They felt that there was little to nothing about … Continue reading Objects don’t equal objectivity, or: The pitfalls of object-driven interpretation
It’s just a good day out, or: What if interpretation doesn’t matter?
I have a confession to make: as I prepared for my first weekend of field research last week, I was suddenly overcome by a terrible fear. What if it turns out that interpretation has no real importance to visitors? What if they don’t come because it’s heritage? Quite a few of the staff involved at … Continue reading It’s just a good day out, or: What if interpretation doesn’t matter?