Autumn 2023

Seminar and workshop II: Oral histories, life stories and analysing significance in museums October 5-7, 2023, University of Turku , Arcanum (Arcanuminkuja 1), University of Turku

The NOS-HS workshop series NORDIC VOICES: The use of oral history and personal memories in public history settings explores the use of personal narratives in museums and other cultural institutions in ethically, culturally and socially sustainable ways using participatory methods and future-oriented methods.

The presentations, workshop and excursions are open for all including students. The seminar is free of charge. NOTE! Registration for the excursions and workshops ends September 29th.

Please, register here: Registration form.

The keynotes will be streamed. Link to the records (available for viewing until the sixth of November)


Thursday 5.10.2023

10.00-10.15 (Lecture hall Aava, Arcanum) Welcome Words: Professor Anne Heimo
10.15-11.30 Keynote I
: Adjunct Professor Paula Hamilton (UTS, Sydney): “Intimate publics? Memory and remembering in Museums” (Chair: Anne Heimo)

This paper first brings an international perspective to the extensive changes that have been happening in museums in the 21st century and the aesthetic, ethical and political implications of historical remembrance. The use of Memory as a framing device in museums has had an important impact on all aspects of cultural heritage. We have also seen shifts in ideas about materiality, particularly objects, and an increased use of oral histories as a tool to enhance participation and engagement. Then I explore in a more intimate way the role of objects and stories in and out of museums and how we continue to be tied to the material world across time and space.

11.30-13.00 Lunch (self-paid)
NOTE! Registration is closed. Group size is full.
Excursion to Luostarinmäki open air museum (for registered participants). Note! The presentation will be held at Brinkkala (Vanha Suurtori 3) and the guided tour at Luostarinmäki.
(Maistraatin istuntosali/Magistrate’s courtroom, Brinkkala) Curator Maiju Tuisku (Museum Centre of Turku):Stories from the outskirts of the town: rewriting the museum exhibitions”
Appr. 14.00-15.00 Guided tour of museum

Friday 6.10.2023

10.15-11.30 Keynote II (Lecture hall Aava, Arcanum): Professor Ene Kõresaar (University of Tartu): “Revisiting the Use of Life Stories in the Museum: a Baltic Perspective” (Chair: Helena Ruotsala)

The presentation takes a tour of the significant Baltic history museums to give an insight into the affordances of remembering that museums create for their visitors through biographical approaches in exhibitions. In the background lies the question of how museums make meaning of the 20th century past’s complexities and contradictions. It will be shown that the understanding of the 20th century as a „dark“ or „difficult“ past relates to different, even contradictory interpretation schemes that influence the use of life stories in museums. Is turning to life stories in the museum space a way out of the established paradigms of interpretation or does it repeat them?

11.30-13.00 Lunch (self-paid)
13.00-16.00 Workshop and learning café (Luoma, Arcanum): Dynamic museums and heritage future collection (for registered participants)
Development director, Professor of Practice Leena Paaskoski (The Finnish Forest Museum Lusto / University of Jyväskylä)
Museum director Joanna Kurth (Kokkola Museum)
Museum educator Asta Vaittinen (The Finnish Forest Museum Lusto)
Lecturer of Museum Studies Maija Mäki (University of Turku)
Closing words: Anne Heimo

In this workshop you will have the opportunity to test the use of the heritage future concept in the context of significance analyses.

Saturday 7.10.2023

All day excursion to Paimio Sanatorium (for registered participants)

Inquiries and further information: Emma Pietilä, eepiet(at)