• Susan Elaine Jones

The dead on display

Summary of the University of Southampton "Skeletons, Stories and Social Bodies" conference 2018:

Met some old friends, made some new friends. I bought some fun things. I even sold some things! I learnt a lot. And I won something, with prizes of book and booze!

(And, bizarrely, as an echo of my presentation at Death and the Maiden, having handed a packet of Starburst to my first customer at the stall, he thought the natural thing to do with it was to offer it as a prize to the correct answer to a question during his presentation - and threw the whole packet across the lecture theatre! As a commentary on this technique, I would say he had less velocity than me, but more than made up for it with missile weight and momentum!)

I won't try to summarise all that I learnt, discussed, talked about and scribbled notes on at the conference. So I'm going to highlight these lovely cartoons, made by the lovely Lucy Parry, who has kindly shared with me her very interesting dissertation on use of human remains in museum displays (one of many angles on this topic at the conference). I think these cartoons are wonderful, and highlight the most pertinent aspects of consideration of human remains display, the work of museum people to get the tone correct, and the public reaction and fears of how they will react.

Respectful Atmosphere cartoon, (c) Lucy Parry, 2017

Display cartoon, (c) Lucy Parry, 2017

Virtual cartoon, (c) Lucy Parry, 2017

Reburial cartoon, (c) Lucy Parry, 2017

HR in advertising cartoon, (c) Lucy Parry, 2017

#skeleton #conference #museum #respect #respectful #photography #photographyofdead #humanremains #display #LucyParry