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Museum Piece single work   prose  
Issue Details: First known date: 2012... 2012 Museum Piece
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  • Author's note: Museum Piece is a work of fictocriticism, which is usually considered more of an academic than traditional, commercially marketable narrative, genre. Museum piece demonstrates innovative creative writing research in practice, including the fusion of personal memoir, fiction, historical non-fiction, literary criticism and post-colonial theory integrated within a corpus of architectural writing to create a commercially publishable, novel-length work of fictocriticism.
  • Author's note: Museum Piece arises from my long term 'love affair' with the Old Queensland Museum. My creative response was triggered by a journal article claiming 'a psychoanalysis of architecture might be possible ... that would reveal, by implication, and reflection, its relationship to its subjects' (Eran 2010: 31).
  • Epigraph: When a thing is old, broken, and useless we throw it on the dust heap, but when it is sufficiently old, sufficiently broken, and sufficiently useless we give money for it, put it into a museum, and read papers over it which people come from long distances to hear. By-and-by, when the whirligig of time has brought on another revenge, the museum itself becomes a dust-heap, and remains so till after long ages it is rediscovered, and valued as belonging to a neo-rubbish age - containing, perhaps, traces of a still older paleo-rubbish civilisation. So when people are old, indigent, and in all respects incapable, we hold them to even greater contempt as their poverty and impotence increase, till they reach the pitch where they are actually at the point to die, whereon they become sublime.

    Butler, Samuel 1970 [1908] Essays on Life, Art and Science, Port Washington, Kennikat Press: 45-6

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