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Women and Museums 1850-1914Modernity and the Gendering of Knowledge$
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Kate Hill

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780719081156

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: January 2017

DOI: 10.7228/manchester/9780719081156.001.0001

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Inside the museum: including or excluding women?

Inside the museum: including or excluding women?

(p.17) 1 Inside the museum: including or excluding women?
Women and Museums 1850-1914

Kate Hill

Manchester University Press

This chapter examines women working in museums, paid or as volunteers, in curatorial roles or in secretarial, cleaning, or other positions. It shows that while women had some difficulty accessing curatorial roles, they used non-curatorial roles and volunteering to make space in museums, from which they might also undertake curatorial work; women were less compartmentalised than their job descriptions implied. It also explores the process of professionalisation in museums during the period, and finds that although it privileged men, it was incomplete and inconsistent, and also created opportunities for women. Women found roles undertaking repetitive and detailed work, working with children, and communicating with the general public.

Keywords:   Professionalisation, Volunteering, Women’s employment, Curators, Museums Association

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