Museums for Reconciliation and Peace

Venue: National Folk Museum

Location: Seoul, South Korea

Event Date/Time: Oct 19, 2009 End Date/Time: Oct 21, 2009
Abstract Submission Date: Jul 01, 2009
Paper Submission Date: Aug 15, 2009
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Museums for Reconciliation and Peace
Roles of Ethnographic Museums in the World

Seoul, Korea
19-21 October 2009

ICME (the ICOM International Committee for Museums Ethnography) will hold its 2009 annual conference in Seoul, Korea on 19-21 October, 2009. The meeting will be hosted by The National Folk Museum of Korea ( Abstracts are being invited by July 1, 2009.

ICME 2009/Seoul invites papers addressing one of two topics – Peace and Reconciliation, as addressed in ethnographic museums and The Role of Ethnographic Museums, in general. This conference invites museum ethnographers and others to address either this very focused topic or the more general topic both from the point of view of museum collecting activities and public programs including exhibitions and educational programming.

Reconciliation and peace is a topic much of concern in today’s world. Inherent in intercultural understanding are such values as mutual respect, trust and shared commitment to each other and to the institutions of multi-ethnic and multi-cultural societies. Museums stand poised as educational facilities to serve as neutral places where issues of difference and similarities and the historical, cultural, linguistic and religious particularities of their region can be presented and discussed openly. At this conference we seek to learn how ethnographic museums in many parts of the world have tackled this significant issue.

Authors may address questions such as:
How committed are museums to collecting cultural materials representative of all cultures in the community-at-large?
Are the history, cultural traditions, and values of all communities presented in exhibitions in an equal manner?
Do public programs for youth and adults strive to bring together individuals from different cultural backgrounds?

In a more general sense, papers are invited on the general topic of Roles of Ethnographic Museums in the World. The conference seeks to serve as a forum to understand the place that ethnographic museums have sought to take in their own societies whether they are representing cultures living in their communities or the cultures of overseas peoples.

The exchange of ideas on these two topics promises to be rich and interesting.

This conference is open to museum professionals and all scholars involved in the issues and topics of the annual meeting. Presentations should not exceed 15 minutes. The main language of the conference will be English. We are encouraging the use of visual images wherever possible.

Abstracts, which should not exceed 250 words, should be sent to Dr. Yang Jongsung, Senior Curator, The National Folk Museum of Korea by 1 July 2009, at the latest. Abstracts will be submitted to our editorial committee and a decision on their suitability will be made by the end of July.

Dr. Yang Jongsung, Senior Curator, Folklorist
National Folk Museum of Korea
Jongno-gu Seoul 110-820, Korea
Phone +82-2-3704-3101; fax +82-2-3704-3149

Final details are still being confirmed. The general format of the annual meeting will consist of keynote speakers, papers, roundtables, and museum visits. Registration forms and other details will be available on the ICME and the conference websites in April at &

Note: There is no registration fee for the ICME/2009 conference. Hotel arrangements are being made with the Somerset Palace Hotel (, near the National Folk Museum of Korea. Hotel fees for all invited or accepted speakers will be paid by our hosts. One half of the hotel fees will be paid other conference attendees. All post conference fees will be paid by our host, pre-registration necessary.

The International Committee for Museums of Ethnography is an international committee within ICOM, the International Council of Museums. ICME is comprised of professionals working at and with museums of many names: museums of ethnography, ethnology, anthropology, folk museums, popular culture museums, völkerkunde- and volkskundemuseseums. Some of the museums deal with cultures from far away, some with their own cultures, and some with both. Some work for indigenous peoples, some for immigrants, some for minorities, some for majorities. Some are concerned with the historic past, others with the present. Some focus on small societies, others on continents or the whole world.

What these museums usually have in common is that they are about whole societies or cultures and their tangible and intangible heritage, rather than solely a specific class of objects.

The National Folk Museum of Korea
The National Folk Museum of Korea is one of the Korea’s leading institutions dedicated to the preserving the legacy of traditional Korean life, attracting more than two million visitors annually. As such we serve an educational and cultural role, providing you with opportunities to experience first-hand how Koreans lived in traditional times. The NFMK was established in 1945 and has remained dedicated to historical investigation and research as well as the collection, preservation and exhibition of artifacts related to Korean folkways. Over the years, we have presented our findings and collection in the form of theme exhibits, reports and public lectures. Today we are focusing on our visitors more than ever while adopting a more open and specialized approach to remain in step with the changing paradigm for museums in the 21st century.


Additional Information

ICME 2009 TENTATIVE SCHEDULE CONFERENCE Monday, October 19 – Opening Ceremony, Keynote Speeches, Paper sessions, Welcoming Reception and Performances Tuesday, October 20 – Conference paper sessions, Gyeongbok Palace Tour, Museum Tour and Performance, Formal Dinner Wednesday, October 21 – Conference papers sessions, Declaration, ICME meeting, Closing Ceremony and Farewell Dinner POST-CONFERENCE TOUR (October 22-24) Thursday, October 22 – Morning bus from Seoul, Travel east to North Kyungsang province, Andong City ( Hahoe village ( Visit Andong Hahoe Mask Dance Drama designated as an Important Intangible Cultural Property by Korean government ( Visit Korean Studies Advancement Centre (Museum of Confucian culture/ Library of wooden printing plate) Friday, October 23 - North Kyungsang province, Kyungju city/ Korean traditional village ( Kyungju Sukgulam (stone Buddha grotto) ( and Bulguk Buddhist Temple ( Saturday, October 24 - Kyungju National Museum of Korea (, Visit traditional Winery, The Great Tumuli/ Chum-sung-dae (observatory)( ) Hwangyong Buddhist Temple (, return to Seoul The program is subject to changes.