Skip to main content
Shopping cart: items Cart

Distributed for University of British Columbia Press

Exhibiting Nation

Multicultural Nationalism (and Its Limits) in Canada’s Museums

Distributed for University of British Columbia Press

Exhibiting Nation

Multicultural Nationalism (and Its Limits) in Canada’s Museums

Canada’s brand of nationalism celebrates diversity – so long as it doesn’t challenge the unity, authority, or legitimacy of the state. Caitlin Gordon-Walker explores this tension between unity and diversity in three nationally recognized museums, institutions that must make judgments about what counts as “too different” in order to celebrate who we are as a people and nation through exhibits, programs, and design. Although the contradictions that lie at the heart of multicultural nationalism have the potential to constrain political engagement and dialogue, the sensory feasts on display in Canada’s museums provide a space for citizens to both question and renegotiate the limits of their national vision.


236 pages


Table of Contents

Preface: A Sense of Discomfort

Part 1: Introduction

1 Multicultural Nationalism and the Power of Metaphor

2 Museums, Discipline, and Dialogue

Part 2: Feast

3 The Limits of Unity in Diversity

4 The Royal BC Museum’s Modern History Galleries

Part 3: Spectacle

5 The Limits of Equality and Recognition

6 The Royal Alberta Museum’s Cultural Communities Program

Part 4: Border

7 The Limits of Universalism and Diversity

8 The Royal Ontario Museum’s World Cultures Galleries

Epilogue: Working with the Contradictions

Notes; Bibliography; Index

Be the first to know

Get the latest updates on new releases, special offers, and media highlights when you subscribe to our email lists!

Sign up here for updates about the Press