chapter  3
Indigenous models of museums, curation, and concepts of cultural heritage preservation
Pages 33

Many authors have acknowledged that some sort of collecting is probably a universal human activity (Cannon-Brookes 1984, Pearce 1992, Pomian 1994). As Clifford has commented, “accumulating and displaying valued things is, arguably, a widespread human activity not limited to any class or cultural group” (1997:217). Other authors have pointed out how examples of collections and structures with museum-like functions have existed throughout the world since ancient times (Bazin 1967, Simpson 1996). Shrines and temples are said to possess features common to museums, such as the housing and displaying of objects for ritual purposes (Pomian 1994). Neither is the role of curator new. “In their capacity of overseeing ritual objects, healers and priests throughout the ages have acted as the first curators” (Robb 1992:30).