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3-D Images Show Just How Much a Baby’s Head Changes During Birth

Smithsonian Magazine

As anyone who has gingerly handled a new baby will know, infants are born with soft skulls. their heads need to be a bit squishy in order to make it through the relatively narrow birth canal. But the details of “fetal head molding,” as doctors call the shape changes that occurs to babies’ heads during labor, are not well understood. It isn’t easy, after all, to peek inside a mother as she is giving birth.

But as Mindy Weisberger reports for Live Science, researchers in France have done just that. For a new study published in PLOS One, medical experts used 3-D M.R.I. to capture remarkably detailed images of babies’ skulls and brains during advanced stages of labor. Their findings suggest that infants’ little noggins undergo considerable stress during birth—more so than experts had previously thought.

Twenty-seven pregnant women consented to recieving M.R.I. scans before they gave birth, and of those, seven agreed to be scanned during the second stage of labor—the period between when the cervix has dilated to 10 centimeters and the baby is born. The imaging was performed no more than ten minutes before "expulsory effort," or when the baby descends into the birth canal and mother can begin to push. After the images were taken, the mothers were swiftly rushed to the delivery room; “Patient transportation time from the M.R.I. suite to the delivery room in the same building, bed to bed, was less than three minutes,” the study authors note.

Upon comparing the pre-labor and mid-labor images, the researchers were able to see that all seven babies experienced fetal head molding. This means that different parts of the skull overlapped, to varying degrees, during the birthing process. Infants’ skulls are thus comprised of several bony sections, held together by fibrous materials called sutures, that eventually fuse as the baby grows outside the womb. (Researchers know that skull shifting during birth has been happening in humans and their ancestors for millions of years; it's an adaptation to the evolution of larger brains and the switch to upright walking, which altered the shape of the pelvis.)

Three-dimensional finite element reconstruction of the cranial bones before labor and during the second stage of labor (Ami et al., 2019)

Still, the researchers were surprised by just how much babies’ heads were squishing as they moved through the birth canal. “When we showed the fetal head changing shape, we discovered that we had underestimated a lot of the brain compression during birth,” first study author Olivier Ami, an obstetrician and gynecologist at University of Clermont Auvergne in France, tells Erika Edwards of NBC News.

The skulls of five of the babies under observation quickly returned to their pre-birth state, but changes persisted in two of the babies—possibly due to differences in the elasticity of the skull bones and the supporting fibrous material, among other factors. Two of the three babies with the largest degree of head molding still needed to be delivered via C-section, indicating that mothers may not always be able to give birth vaginally, “even when significant fetal molding occurs,” the study authors note.

Interestingly, the third baby among those with the highest degrees of head warping initially scored low on the Apgar test, which is given to babies soon after birth and assesses skin color, pulse, reflexes, muscle tone and breathing rate. By the time the baby was 10 minutes old, however, its score had risen to a perfect 10. The researchers do not yet know how or if ease of delivery—the infant was born vagianally and the delivery was “uncomplicated”—and fetal head molding factors into this “risky clinical presentation,” the study authors note. But it does suggest that we might need to rethink the how we view “normal births,” which are typically defined as natural births that happen with “only a few maternal expulsive efforts.”

“This definition does not take into consideration the ability of the fetal head to deform,” the researchers explain. “If the fetal head’s compliance is high, the skull and brain may undergo significant deformation as the birth canal is crossed, and the child's condition at birth may not be good.”

Revelations about the stresses that come with fetal head molding might also explain why some babies are born with retinal and brain hemorrhages, the latter of which can lead to complications like cerebral palsy, Edwards reports. And though the study is small, the researchers say the high quality imaging could inform efforts to develop a “more realistic simulation of delivery” that will help medical experts predict which mothers are at risk of running into biomechanical complications during childbirth—and intervene before harm comes to the baby.

3-D Visualization of Cassiopeia A

Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory
A research team has released a unique look of the supernova remnant Cassiopeia A (Cas A). By combining data from Chandra, the Spitzer Space Telescope, and ground- based optical observations, astronomers have been able to construct the first three-dimensional fly-through of a supernova remnant. This visualization (shown here as a still image) was made possible by importing the data into a medical imaging program that has been adapted for astronomical use. The green region shown in the image is mostly iron observed in X-rays; the yellow region is mostly argon and silicon seen in X-rays, optical and infrared and the red region is cooler debris seen in the infrared. The positions of these points in three-dimensional space were found by using the Doppler effect and simple assumptions about the supernova explosion.

3. Clement Price - (Re)Presenting America: The Evolution of Culturally Specific Museums

National Museum of the American Indian
Race, Identity, and American Museums - Clement Price, Board of Governors Distinguished Service Professor, Rutgers University The National Museum of the American Latino Commission's report recommending the establishment of a Smithsonian National Museum of the American Latino prompts debate concerning the value of "ethnic" or "culturally specific" museums. Thoughtful people ask whether the proliferation of museums dedicated to particular experiences or cultures contributes to the "balkanization" of the United States. Others observe that traditional museums have not represented our country's people and their achievements as fully as they should be. Ethnic/culturally specific museums, they note, provide different portals into what it means to be an American, and their programs provide depth and fullness of perspective, enriching our national narrative. These are serious questions that the Smithsonian seeks to address in a comprehensive, insightful way. By presenting various facets of the existence and practices of "ethnic/culturally specific" museums at the Smithsonian and elsewhere, this special symposium advances a vital discussion of a challenging subject. It provides an important step toward understanding the history of museums in matters of race, the development of "ethnic/culturally specific" museums, and the development of a cogent philosophy on these museums. #CulturalMuseums

300 lire Receiving the Edict of Reform single

National Postal Museum
On November 23, 1982, Vatican City issued a series of stamps and a souvenir sheet to commemorate the fourth centenary of the reform of the Gregorian calendar, which occurred in 1582. The series consists of three values -- 200-, 300-, and 700-lire. The designs, engraved by Antonello Ciaburro, are based on bas-reliefs sculpted on the tomb of Pope Gregory VIII (d. 1187), St. Peter's Basilica.

The Gregorian calendar corrected a major error in the existing Julian calendar, which Julius Caesar introduced in 46 B.C. The Julian calendar was 365 1/4 days long and the actual solar year was 365.2422 days. This meant that the Julian calendar exceeded the solar year by eleven minutes and fourteen seconds each year. This difference grew with each successive century, and by the late sixteenth century, the Julian calendar was ten full days longer than the solar calendar.

The Council of Trent (1545-1563) recognized that this growing deviation affected the liturgical calendar of the Catholic Church. Religious feast days no longer conformed to the guidelines established by the Council of Nicaea, 325 AD. For example, Easter, intended as a spring observance, would ultimately occur in the summer.

Pope Gregory XIII (1502-1585), elected in 1572, organized the necessary reform of the calendar. In 1577, he formed an international commission of distinguished experts to determine the necessary corrections. The commission approved a calendar worked-out by Luigi Lilius (d. 1576), a Neapolitan astronomer who had discovered that the Julian Calendar was ten days too long. In 1579, the pope ordered the construction of the first astronomical observatory at the Vatican. Here the commission completed the final details of calendar reform, including a more accurate lunar almanac. These details were largely the work of the German Jesuit Christopher Clavius (1537?-1612), a noted astronomer and mathematician.

Papal edict proclaimed the new Gregorian Calendar in February of 1582. This edict declared that the day after Thursday, October 4, 1582, would be Friday, October 15, thus dropping ten days and bringing the calendar in line with the solar year. The pope also approved an important reform involving leap years. Every fourth year would continue as a leap year, with an extra day in February. However, years ending in two zeroes would be leap years only if divisible by 400. In this manner, three days dropped every four centuries, thus avoiding major deviation from the solar year.

The stamps, vertical in format, measure 30 x 40 mm and have a perforation of 13 1/4 x 14. Along the top of each stamp appear the inscription "1582-1982" and the denomination. The words POSTE VATICANE appear along the bottom. The stamps were produced on white paper and printed in recess in sheets of forty. The Polygraphic Institute and Mint of the Italian State printed 900,000 complete .

"Calendar Reform." Vatican Notes 31, no. 4 (January 1983): 1, 8.

300 years and counting: A new look at New Orleans and “Creole cuisine”

National Museum of American History

Celebrating the 300th anniversary of its founding this year, New Orleans is a city whose culture and cuisine have captivated the American imagination for generations. Given the way authors and travel writers have described the city as a place steeped in French and Spanish traditions, it is not all that surprising that Americans have come to associate New Orleans primarily with European cultures. New Orleans’s history, though, is not only tied to countries like France and Spain. Like any major port, New Orleans has been influenced by a diverse group of migrants coming from all parts of the globe. The presence of those disparate cultures in New Orleans, however, makes it difficult to define “Creole” New Orleans, a title that has become a cultural catchall despite its distinct and traceable plethora of influences.

Scan of book. Left page shows photograph of The General Beauregard Home in New Orleans. Right page has text and title, “New Orleans For the Tourist”“New Orleans for the Tourist,” 1909. Courtesy of Warshaw Collection of Business Americana—Geographic, Louisiana, Archives Center, National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution.

Defining "Creole" is not a new dilemma. Even in the 19th century, visitors and residents of New Orleans struggled to define its culture and identify its primary influences. Travel writer Lafcadio Hearn acknowledged in 1877 that New Orleans “resembles no other city upon the face of the earth, yet it recalls vague memories of a hundred cities.”

Composite of four images, all showing streets and buildings in New OrleansNew Orleans: “The Crescent City.” Courtesy of Warshaw Collection of Business Americana—Geographic, Louisiana, Archives Center, National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution.

After living in another river city, Cincinnati, Hearn settled in New Orleans from 1878 to 1888, where he wrote about all aspects of urban life, but seemed particularly entranced by the city’s food scene. Eventually, he compiled what is popularly consider the first Creole cookbook, La Cuisine Creole (1885)—one of the first published works that identifies the food of New Orleans as “Creole cuisine.” After spending years in New Orleans, observing the people that frequented its food markets, restaurants, and taverns, he endeavored to define the city and its food culture for American audiences. According to Hearn, “‘La Cuisine Creole’ (Creole cookery) partakes of the nature of its birthplace—New Orleans—which is cosmopolitan in its nature, blending the characteristics of the American, French, Spanish, Italian, West Indian, and Mexican.” He also identified a set of dishes he saw as part of the canon of Creole cuisine, including gumbo and jambalaya, both of which were heavily shaped by West African and Caribbean culinary traditions.

New Orleans’s cookbook culture took off after the publication of La Cuisine Creole, resulting in the publication of hundreds of cookbooks. Although Hearn acknowledged the cultural potpourri of New Orleans’s food scene, many of his contemporaries did not. At the turn of the 20th century, early Creole cookbooks glossed over or omitted entirely the contributions of people of color, thereby depicting New Orleans as a product of European culture rather than one equally, if not more so, influenced by West African, Caribbean, and Latin American cultures. So enduring was this vision of Creole cuisine as an unchanging relic of a European colonial period that it is hard for Americans to imagine the city’s cuisine as it truly is: fluid and in constant evolution, and connected to a vast cultural web that stretches from the Gulf of Mexico around the globe.

Throughout the 20th and 21st centuries, diverse people and cultures have reshaped the city’s food culture. By 1900 Sicilian migrants had integrated themselves into the city’s local food culture and economy—serving as food vendors in the city’s public markets and introducing stuffed artichokes and muffaletta sandwiches to the Crescent City. As a result of the Vietnam War, Vietnamese refugees migrated to New Orleans in the 1970s, acquainting New Orleanians with pho and banh mi, which have now become staples of the city’s food scene. Since Hurricane Katrina, migrants from Central and South America have been a crucial part of the labor force rebuilding the city; it is now common to find restaurants offering piping-hot pupusas and arepas. These largely unrecognized, yet present, food cultures are very much alive in New Orleans’s food scene today.

Chef Alon Shaya seated at a tableChef Alon Shaya. Courtesy of Alfred A. Knopf Publishers, New York. Photo credit: Rush Jagoe.

Within this environment marked by flux and fusion, chef Alon Shaya’s long celebrated career in New Orleans skyrocketed to national fame in 2015—not by making gumbo and jambalaya, but by making borekas and shakshouka—dishes featured at the restaurant bearing his name, SHAYA, and in his cookbook, SHAYA: An Odyssey of Food, My Journey Back to Israel (2018). Like that of New Orleans, the cuisine of Israel is perhaps best described as a melting pot. In his cookbook, Shaya notes that Israeli cuisine draws influences from many regional food cultures, and in his own words states, “Israeli cuisine is a gumbo, a melding of many food cultures.” Israel is a nation whose food cultures was fused through the processes of immigration, marrying flavors from Germany, Bulgaria, Yemen, France, Spain, Turkey, Morocco, and Greece, among other countries, with an existing and vibrant Arab food culture. Shaya’s personal history is bound up in this process. His grandparents immigrated to Israel, and he emigrated from the country to the United States as a child, taking with him memories of fried eggplant and lamb kebabs. In New Orleans he revived flavors from Israel, embracing the fluidity of New Orleans’s food scene to establish what would become a James Beard Award-winning Israeli restaurant in the heart of Creole New Orleans.

A food dish in a skilletShakshouka, eggs poached in a spicy tomato sauce, featured in SHAYA: An Odyssey of Food, My Journey Back to Israel. Courtesy of Alfred A. Knopf Publishers. Photo credit: Rush Jagoe.

This month, Shaya will be our guest chef for “Cooking Up History,” where we will be discussing his professional career and personal connections to Israeli cuisine and how he was integral in bringing these traditional foods to the attention of both New Orleans and the nation. His program will be an opportunity for the museum to commemorate New Orleans’s tricentennial by exploring one in an amazing array of culinary cultures that have shaped the city’s culinary scene. This program will also be an opportunity to revisit Lafcadio Hearn’s definition of Creole cuisine and discuss the ways in which New Orleans’s food culture has evolved since the publication of La Cuisine Creole in 1885 because of innovators like Shaya.

Ashley Rose Young is the historian of the American Food History Project at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History. She is also the host of “Cooking Up History,” a live cooking demonstration at the museum’s demonstration kitchen. During these programs, Young and a guest chef prepare dishes and discuss their history and traditions.

Posted Date: 
Sunday, March 11, 2018 - 14:30
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3000 Cash, Ch'ien T'ai Chan, China, n.d.

National Museum of American History
One (1) 3000 cash note

Ch'ien T'ai Chan, China, n.d.

Obverse Image: Chinese at the top and in columns below, vignettes surrounding text depicting people, elephant, donkey, etc. (maybe the shichifukuji?)

Obverse Text: [NEEDS TRANSLATION]

Reverse Image: N/A

Reverse Text: N/A

[[Observed Text]]

兌付銀洋 / 遷 / 磘灣鎮 / 宿 / 乾太棧 / 奉吿諸翁謹防假票 / 字第 號 憑票兌付失落不認 / 憑票取詆京錢叁千文 / 年 月 日 票 / 仕宦而至將相富貴而歸故鄉此人情之所榮而今昔之所同也蓋士方窮時困阨里閤庸人孺子皆得易而侮之若季子不禮於其嫂買臣見棄於其妻一旦車馬高駟旗旄導前而騎後夾道之人相與騈肩累迹瞻望咨嗟而所謂庸夫愚婦者奔走駭汗羞愧俯伏以自悔罪於車塵馬足之間此一介之士得於當時而意氣之成昔人比之衣錦之榮者也惟大丞相衛國公則不然公相人也世有令德為時名卿自公少時已擢高科登顯任海內之士閒下風而望餘光者盖六有年矣㪽[[?]]謂將相而富貴皆公爵宜素有非如窮阨之人僥倖得志於一時出於庸夫愚婦之不意以驚駭而誇耀之也然則高牙大喜不足為公榮桓圭袞裳不足為公貴惟德被生民而功施社稷勒之金石播之聲詩以耀後世而垂無窮此公之志而士六以此望於公也豈止誇一時而榮一鄉哉公在至和中嘗以武康之來治於相乃作晝錦之堂於後圃既又刻詩於石以遺相人其言以快恩讐矜名譽為可薄盖不以昔人之㪽[[?]]誇者為榮而以為戒於此見公之視富貴為何如而其志豈易量哉

[[Reverse Text]]

75.3.29

355th Tactical Fighter Squadron Falcons Operation Desert Storm January 17 -February 28th 1991

National Air and Space Museum
355th TACTICAL FIGHTER SQUADRON Color offset photolithograph print comemorating Operation Desert Storm. Photograph of squadron in front of A-10 Thunderbolt II, text, photographs of each squadron's airplanes, features nose art of each plane, squadron patches.

Fly Now: The National Air and Space Museum Poster Collection

Throughout their history, posters have been a significant means of mass communication, often with striking visual effect. Wendy Wick Reaves, the Smithsonian Portrait Gallery Curator of Prints and Drawings, comments that "sometimes a pictorial poster is a decorative masterpiece-something I can't walk by without a jolt of aesthetic pleasure. Another might strike me as extremely clever advertising … But collectively, these 'pictures of persuasion,' as we might call them, offer a wealth of art, history, design, and popular culture for us to understand. The poster is a familiar part of our world, and we intuitively understand its role as propaganda, promotion, announcement, or advertisement."

Reaves' observations are especially relevant for the impressive array of aviation posters in the National Air and Space Museum's 1300+ artifact collection. Quite possibly the largest publicly-held collection of its kind in the United States, the National Air and Space Museum's posters focus primarily on advertising for aviation-related products and activities. Among other areas, the collection includes 19th-century ballooning exhibition posters, early 20th-century airplane exhibition and meet posters, and twentieth-century airline advertisements.

The posters in the collection represent printing technologies that include original lithography, silkscreen, photolithography, and computer-generated imagery. The collection is significant both for its aesthetic value and because it is a unique representation of the cultural, commercial and military history of aviation. The collection represents an intense interest in flight, both public and private, during a significant period of its technological and social development.

Copyright Disclosure for Orphaned Works

Whenever possible, the museum provides factual information about copyright owners and related matters in its records and other texts related to the collections. For many of the images in this collection, some of which were created for or by corporate entities that no longer exist, the museum does not own any copyrights. Therefore, it generally does not grant or deny permission to copy, distribute or otherwise use material in this collection. If identified, permission and possible fees may be required from the copyright owner independently of the museum. It is the user's obligation to determine and satisfy copyright or other use restrictions when copying, distributing or otherwise using materials found in the museum's collections. Transmission or reproduction of protected materials beyond that allowed by fair use requires the written permission of the copyright owners. Users must make their own assessments of rights in light of their intended use.

If you have any more information about an item you've seen in the Fly Now: The National Air and Space Museum Poster Collection, or if you are a copyright owner and believe we have not properly attributed your work to you or have used it without permission, we want to hear from you. Please contact pisanod@si.edu with your contact information and a link to the relevant content.

View more information about the Smithsonian's general copyright policies at http://www.si.edu/termsofuse

3D simulations reveals why the Sun flips its magnetic field every 11 years

Smithsonian Insider

Using new numerical simulations and observations, scientists may now be able to explain why the Sun’s magnetic field reverses every eleven years. This significant discovery […]

The post 3D simulations reveals why the Sun flips its magnetic field every 11 years appeared first on Smithsonian Insider.

3c International Geophysical Year single

National Postal Museum
This Geophysical Year Issue stamp commemorates the International Geographical Year, an international scientific project that was conducted from July 1, 1957, to December 31, 1958. The project was organized by the International Council of Scientific Unions. Scientists from sixty-seven countries participated by conducting experiments and sharing information. Achievements during this project included advancements in plate tectonic knowledge, the discovery of the Van Allen radiation belt, as well as the launch of the first artificial satellites – Sputnik 1 and 2 by the Soviet Union and Explorer 1 by the United States. The stamp features an image of a solar disc and the hands from Michelangelo’s “Creation of Man.”

United States; Soviet Union; International Geographical Year; international; geophysics; science; scientists; experiment; observation; satellite; Michelangelo; Creation of Man; sun; art

4. David Hurst Thomas - (Re)Presenting America: The Evolution of Culturally Specific Museums

National Museum of the American Indian
"Native Americans and the Anthropology Community," David Hurst Thomas, Curator, Department of Anthropology, American Museum of Natural History, New York. The National Museum of the American Latino Commission's report recommending the establishment of a Smithsonian National Museum of the American Latino prompts debate concerning the value of "ethnic" or "culturally specific" museums. Thoughtful people ask whether the proliferation of museums dedicated to particular experiences or cultures contributes to the "balkanization" of the United States. Others observe that traditional museums have not represented our country's people and their achievements as fully as they should be. Ethnic/culturally specific museums, they note, provide different portals into what it means to be an American, and their programs provide depth and fullness of perspective, enriching our national narrative. These are serious questions that the Smithsonian seeks to address in a comprehensive, insightful way. By presenting various facets of the existence and practices of "ethnic/culturally specific" museums at the Smithsonian and elsewhere, this special symposium advances a vital discussion of a challenging subject. It provides an important step toward understanding the history of museums in matters of race, the development of "ethnic/culturally specific" museums, and the development of a cogent philosophy on these museums. #CulturalMuseums

4.5 Billion-Year-Old Meteorite Found in the Australian Desert

Smithsonian Magazine

In late November, a high-tech network of cameras scattered about the Australian outback spotted a meteorite plummeting through the atmosphere. Just over a month later, on New Year’s Eve, a group of geologists finally found the 3.7 pound, 4.5 billion-year-old space rock buried in a crater near Lake Eyre, extracting it only hours before heavy rains would have washed away any traces of the rock.

"We couldn't see it, and I was starting to think it had been washed away by previous rains," Phil Bland, a planetary geologist at Curtin University tells Ariel Bogel for Mashable. "We found it really three hours before the rain came in."

In a statement, Bland said he and his team managed to dig up the meteorite “by the skin of our teeth.” But while Bland was excited by successfully retrieving the meteorite, what’s really important is the automated camera system that not only showed Bland and his colleagues where to dig, but where the space rock came from, Yanan Wang writes for the Washington Post.

The meteorite is the first detected by the Desert Fireball Network, a system of 32 automated observation cameras spread out over remote and rural regions in the outback. Of these cameras, five detected the meteorite’s entry into Earth’s atmosphere on November 25, 2015, giving planetary scientists plenty of data to calculate its trajectory. 

Based on this data, they knew the general area to look for the space rock as well as where it came from, Laura Gartry writes for ABC News in Australia. Bland and his colleagues traced its origins back to the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter. 

"We have so few data points about meteorites," Bland tells Bogel. "Every time, it teaches us something new. There are 50,000 meteorites in collections around the world, but we've only got orbits for 20."

While researchers have used cameras to scan the skies for meteorites for decades, many of those networks were built in hilly regions or in forests. Because the Desert Fireball Network is situated in the arid terrain of the Australian outback, the cameras have a much easier time pinpointing where a meteorite will land, Wang writes.

While the camera network is inventive, Bland wasn’t sure how well it would actually work until it successfully led his team to a meteorite.

“We built this whole blooming network and the hardware is really innovative,” Bland tells Yang. “There are a bunch of technical developments that can do things for a lot cheaper. But you don’t know how any of it works—if it works—until you find a little rock on the ground.”

Now, Bland hopes that data gathered from the Desert Fireball Network and from the newly-retrieved meteorite can help shed light on the early formation of the solar system.

40 lire 1861 an d1961 Mastheads single

National Postal Museum
On July 4, 1961, the Vatican issued three stamps to mark the centenary of the Vatican newspaper, L'Osservatore Romano (The Roman Observer.) The stamps remained valid for postage until September 30, 1962.

The 40-lire value, printed in red brown and black, illustrates the mastheads of the first issue and the issue of June 29, 1961. The home of The Roman Observer is depicted on the 70-lire stamp, which was printed in light blue and black. The 250-lire denomination has as its design a modern press on which the newspaper was printed at the time of this stamp issue. Yellow and black were the colors chosen for this stamp.

All stamps were designed by Piero Grassellini and printed by the photogravure method at the State Printing Office, Rome. The stamps were arranged in panes of forty (5 x 8) with the inscription at the top of the pane reading one sheet of forty stamps, Value ___ Lire. The stamps were valid for postage until September 30, 1962.

Reference:

Vatican Notes 10, no. 1 (July-August 1961): 1-2.

44 Years Ago, Shirley Chisholm Became the First Black Woman to Run For President

Smithsonian Magazine

During her decades-long political career, Shirley Chisholm established a lot of firsts. A community activist and educator-turned-congresswoman from the Brooklyn neighborhood of Bedford-Stuyvesant in New York, Chisholm became the first black woman ever to be elected to the House of Representatives and a founding member of both the Congressional Black Caucus and later, the Congressional Women’s Caucus. But perhaps most significantly, just a few years after arriving in Congress, Chisholm became the first black woman to run as a major party candidate for president of the United States, breaking down barriers and paving a path for people like President Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton.

Chisholm was first elected to Congress in 1968 and when she stepped onto the floor of the House of Representatives, she quickly became known not for her race or gender, but for being outspoken and unafraid to fight for what she believed in, Rajini Vaidyanathan writes for the BBC.

"I have no intention of just sitting quietly and observing. I intend to speak out immediately in order to focus on the nation's problems," Chisholm said at the time, Vaidyanathan reports.

In her first floor speech on March 26, 1969, she spoke out against the Vietnam War, vowing to vote against any new military spending. She fought for immigrant rights, to improve access to education and to help create the Consumer Product Safety Commission, according to her House of Representatives biography.

"Can you imagine being a woman, and black in congress then?" California Congresswoman Barbara Lee, who once worked for Chisholm, tells Vaidyanathan. "Some of the men in Congress did not respect her, she just stood out and they didn't get her. But she wouldn't back down. She didn't go along to get along, she went to change things."

In 1972, just a few years after being elected to Congress, Shirley Chisholm announced that she was seeking the Democratic nomination for the presidency, running against politicians like George McGovern, Hubert Humphrey, and George Wallace. But while Chisholm admitted that she never expected to win and her campaign was largely symbolic, she ran in order to prove that Americans would vote for a black woman.

"I stand before you today, to repudiate the ridiculous notion that the American people will not vote for qualified candidates, simply because he is not white or because she is not a male," Chisholm told supporters when she launched her campaign. "I do not believe that in 1972, the great majority of Americans will continue to harbour such narrow and petty prejudice."

Chisholm’s campaign wasn’t easy. During the road to the primaries, she survived multiple assassination attempts, sued to make sure she would appear in televised debates and fought her way onto the primary ballots in 12 states. Though she didn’t win, in the end Chisholm won 10 percent of the total vote at the Democratic National Convention, clearing a path for future candidates that weren't white or male.

"Shirley Chisholm would have been proud of our achievements," Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke, who represents part of Chisholm’s district, tells Mary C. Curtis for NBC News. But, she says, Chisholm still wouldn’t be satisfied.

"Why more than 40 years after she entered the Democratic Party primary for president of the United States, this nation has yet to elect a woman of color as president; she would go right to the heart of it because her style, her way of capturing the hearts and minds of Americans was courageous and it was forthright," Clarke tells Curtis.

Editors Note, January 29, 2016: This post's title has been amended to clarify that Shirley Chisholm ran as a major party candidate in the 1972 presidential race. Margaret Chase Smith was the first woman to run for president as a major party candidate.

5 kid-tested ways to explore a museum exhibition (without touching)

National Museum of American History

Museum educator Sarah Erdman makes your next museum visit with the family just a little more fun with tips on how to boost interactivity when a "no touching" policy is in effect.

I've blogged before about strategies I use to make hands-off museum exhibitions more engaging for my students and my own toddler. I wrote about making observation active, asking your kid "visual thinking" questions, "theme-ing" your visit around a fun topic, and letting your kid be the tour guide. The response from readers? "Be more specific!"

Here are five kid-approved ways you can interact with different objects… without touching them!

A 1965 Ford Mustang on display in the museum lobby
A 1965 Ford Mustang on display in the museum lobby

Car

  • Find all of the shapes and colors on the car. Hubcaps alone make this a fun challenge.
  • Compare and contrast this car to other cars (or even different types of vehicles). What is the same? What is different?
  • Make up a story about who owned the car. Can you find any information about who REALLY owned the car in the text panels?
  • Plan a trip! Where would you take this car? Does it have special features for certain terrain? What would you need? Maybe your kids can sketch out a road map.
  • Pretend to drive the car through the museums (beeping noises are a-OK). Can you find any other cars in the museum?
Food on display in "FOOD: Transforming the American Table 1950-2000"
Food on display in "FOOD: Transforming the American Table 1950-2000"

Food

  • Go on a letter hunt! Can you find the whole alphabet? Can you find the letters to spell your name?
  • Is there anything you recognize? Can you describe how it tastes?
  • Is there anything you DON'T recognize? How do you find out about it?
  • Imagine eating a bite. Which food looks like it would be sweetest or the most salty? Which might be crunchy and which might be more smooth?
  • What is your favorite recipe? Does it use any of the food or tools you see in the exhibition? How do you make it? You can even pretend to make it together in the exhibition.
  • Bring a favorite book about food to share together near the display.
Carol Channing's dress from "Hello Dolly!"
Carol Channing's dress from "Hello Dolly!"

Clothing

  • Describe the clothes. What colors are there? What do you think it would feel like if you could touch it?
  • Who did it belong to? How do we know? When did they wear it?
  • How would YOU act if you were wearing it? Which outfit might be best for dancing, working, or going on an adventure?
  • If you are looking at more then one outfit, which one do you like and why?
  • What clothes that YOU own do you think should be in a museum? Why?
  • What type of shoes might you wear with this outfit? What type of hat?
Dentures from the mid-1800s in the museum's collection
Dentures from the mid-1800s in the museum's collection

All-purpose strategies for a variety of objects

  • Scavenger Hunt: You can look for colors, shapes, letters, numbers, animals, faces... anything you can think of!
  • What is your favorite/least favorite thing you've seen? Why?
  • Pretend you were creating a new museum. What five objects would YOU put in it?
  • Can you make up a story about an object?
  • Can you move or pose like that object?
  • If the object could talk, what would its voice sound like?
  • What do you think these objects might smell like? 

Sarah Erdman is the Goldman Sachs Fellow for Early Learning at the museum and the founder of Cabinet of Curiosities. She has also blogged about the best things to pack for a museum trip with kids and how to handle tough topics in museum exhibitions with kids. She also recommends the museum's Our Story activities, including the newest one on money matters

Author(s): 
Fellow Sarah Erdman
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5. A.M. Q&A - (Re)Presenting America: The Evolution of Culturally Specific Museums

National Museum of the American Indian
The National Museum of the American Latino Commission's report recommending the establishment of a Smithsonian National Museum of the American Latino prompts debate concerning the value of "ethnic" or "culturally specific" museums. Thoughtful people ask whether the proliferation of museums dedicated to particular experiences or cultures contributes to the "balkanization" of the United States. Others observe that traditional museums have not represented our country's people and their achievements as fully as they should be. Ethnic/culturally specific museums, they note, provide different portals into what it means to be an American, and their programs provide depth and fullness of perspective, enriching our national narrative. These are serious questions that the Smithsonian seeks to address in a comprehensive, insightful way. By presenting various facets of the existence and practices of "ethnic/culturally specific" museums at the Smithsonian and elsewhere, this special symposium advances a vital discussion of a challenging subject. It provides an important step toward understanding the history of museums in matters of race, the development of "ethnic/culturally specific" museums, and the development of a cogent philosophy on these museums. #CulturalMuseums

50 Years of Chimpanzee Discoveries at Gombe

Smithsonian Magazine

Fifty years ago today, Jane Goodall arrived at Gombe Stream Chimpanzee Reserve (now Gombe National Park) in Tanzania and began documenting the lives of the chimpanzees that lived there. When Goodall ended her fieldwork to advocate for the chimps and the environment in general, other researchers took up the work, and the Gombe chimp research project is now one of the longest running studies of a population of wild animals. Since the study's start in 1960, researchers have published more than 200 scientific papers about the chimps, including some of the most important discoveries about our primate cousins. Here are the top five:


Gombe chimps eating a red colobus monkey (courtesy of flickr user kibuyu)


1) Chimpanzees eat meat: Before Goodall began her studies in Gombe, most scientists thought that chimpanzees were vegetarians. That notion was quickly dropped after Goodall observed chimps eating what appeared to be a freshly killed piglet in October 1960. She would later observe chimps hunting young bush pigs and baby colobus monkeys.

2) Chimpanzees use tools: Goodall observed two chimps, David Greybeard and Goliath, using sticks to extract termites, the first instance of a non-human species using a tool. Gombe chimps also use sticks to catch army ants and use leaves to soak up water to drink and to clean themselves. Other chimps have been observed using stones to crack open nuts.

3) Chimpanzees engage in warfare: In 1974, the Gombe chimps split into two groups that then proceeded to battle for dominance for the next four years. This was the first instance of a non-human primate species engaging in long-term war.

4) Chimpanzees can be cannibals: In 1975, one female chimp, Passion, was observed killing another's infant and sharing the meat with her daughter, Pom. The pair would continue their infant cannibalism for two years. A similar event has been observed among chimps in Uganda.

5) Chimpanzees have complex social relationships: Chimpanzees live in small groups of up to six individuals, and several of these smaller groups belong to a larger community of 40 to 60 chimps. The males, led by an alpha, dominate the group, while the females have their own hierarchy. Within those groups, there is a complex set of social interactions, a chimp "soap opera" almost, that has kept the Gombe researchers busy for the past five decades.

50 lire Copernicus single

National Postal Museum
On June 19, 1973, Vatican City issued four stamps commemorating Polish astronomer Nicolaus Copernicus, whose observations inspired the Gregorian calendar used today.

Copernicus was born in Thorn in 1473 and died at Frauenburg in 1543. His uncle, the bishop of Ermland, sent him to the University of Cracow, where he studied mathematics. The bishop made him a canon of the Cathedral of Frauenburg. He studied medicine at Padua and received a Canon Law degree at Ferrara. He returned to Poland in 1503, but was called to the Lateran Council in 1514 to reform the calendar.

In Poland, Copernicus followed a program of astronomical observations and published twenty-seven papers between 1497 and 1529. He rejected Ptolemy's accepted theory that the earth is the center of the solar system, instead proposing that the planets revolve around the sun. Copernicus developed his heliocentric theory and published "On the Revolution of Heavenly Bodies" in 1543. Pope Clement VII (1478-1534) initially approved his work, but when he tried to publish his work at the age of 68, he met resistance.

On June 17, 1973, all the bishops of Poland and Cardinal Franz Koenig of Vienna were present at a Mass for the celebration of the five hundredth anniversary of the birth of Copernicus, in the Cathedral of Frombork, Poland, where Copernicus had been a canon.

The 20-lire and 100-lire stamps show a view of the city of Thorn in the diocese of Chelmno, copied from an original in the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna. The Legend reads, "Nicolaus Copernicus, Thorn 1473." The 50-lire and 130-lire show a portrait of Copernicus from a painting in the National Library of Austria. The legend reads, "Nicolaus Copernicus 1473-1543".

The stamps were printed by the Austrian State Printing Works in Vienna. 1,400,000 sets were printed on white paper, without a watermark, with perforations of 14 x 14. They have unlimited validity.

Reference:

"Nicolcaus Capernicus." Vatican Notes 22, no. 2 (September-October 1973): 2-4.

50 lire Noah's Ark, Rainbow and Doves single

National Postal Museum
On April 23, 1974, Vatican City issued two stamps to observe the centennial of the Universal Postal Union. The 50-lire stamp depicts a mosaic of Noah's ark with a rainbow and a dove with olive branch. The 90-lire stamp depicts a lamb drinking water from a mountain stream and has the Tablets of the Law on top.

The stamps were issued in panes of thirty and have a perforation of 13 1/4 x 14. IPS, Rome, printed 1,600,000 complete sets in five colors, offset, on glossy white paper.

Reference:

"Centenary of the Universal Postal Union." Vatican Notes 23, no. 1 (July-August 1974): 1.

50-Year-Old Moon Data Reveals Unseen Earthquakes

Smithsonian Magazine

While scientists have known that the moon experiences quakes since Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin first set foot on its surface, data taken during the 1970’s is still revealing new information about the moon’s seismic activity.

As part of 1972’s Apollo 17 mission – the last time humans landed on the moon’s surface – the astronauts left behind seismic sensors that gathered and transmitted data until 1977. While the sensors only collected data for five years, they registered a huge amount of seismic activity that come in four distinct forms: thermal moonquakes caused by severe changes in temperature as the moon goes from day to night, meteoroid impacts, deep moonquakes and shallow moonquakes, Adrienne LaFrance writes for The Atlantic.

But thanks to a new computer algorithm, scientists are still finding new information about the moon’s seismic activity buried in that data, Joshua Sokol writes for New Scientist.

“We are able to classify more than 50% of previously unclassified lunar events, and additionally find over 200 new events not listed in the current lunar event catalog," Brigitte Knapmeyer-Endrun and Conny Hammer, the algorithm’s developers and co-authors write in a new study

“The moon was ringing like a bell,” geologist Clive Neal wrote in 2006 after conducting his own study of the data supplied by NASA.

Understanding how seismic activity differs between Earth and other celestial bodies is important as researchers at NASA and other space agencies begin exploring options for establishing extraterrestrial bases. Moon or marsquakes could be deadly for unprepared settlers, as the shaking ground could tear apart shelters that need precise fittings to maintain life support, according to a NASA statement from 2006. Data from moonquakes is particularly relevant in this scenario as it lacks active tectonic plates, as does Mars. Because the moon and Mars are both much smaller than Earth, they are essentially “one-plate planets,” Neal tells LaFrance. That means their seismic activity will follow very different patterns from what geologists observe on Earth.

The new moonquake data comes as NASA researchers are preparing a probe for a new Mars mission, called “InSight.” The InSight mission will include seismic sensors that could finally confirm scientists’ suspicions about the Red Planet’s geologic activity.

“We assume that there are quakes on Mars, but none have been measured—as yet!” Neal tells LaFrance. “We do not know what causes the largest moonquakes nor where they are precisely located. We know nothing about Mars, so the InSight mission is critical.”

By understanding and identifying types of seismic activity on the moon and Mars, NASA engineers might get one step closer to figuring out the best ways to build habitats for the first humans to make their homes away from planet Earth.

50th Anniversary of Powered Flight

National Air and Space Museum
50TH ANNIVERSARY OF POWERED FLIGHT. Multicolor relief halftone print commemorating 50 years of powered flight. At bottom, a boy holds a yellow model plane with U.S. Air Force insignia and points to a large moon above. Upon the moon are small, blue images of a jet plane and the Wright Flyer. Full text: at bottom left and right in yellow sans-serif lettering, "Progress" and "Security." Within a yellow banner superimposed on the moon, black sans-serif text, "50TH ANNIVERSARY OF POWERED FLIGHT."

Fly Now: The National Air and Space Museum Poster Collection

Throughout their history, posters have been a significant means of mass communication, often with striking visual effect. Wendy Wick Reaves, the Smithsonian Portrait Gallery Curator of Prints and Drawings, comments that "sometimes a pictorial poster is a decorative masterpiece-something I can't walk by without a jolt of aesthetic pleasure. Another might strike me as extremely clever advertising … But collectively, these 'pictures of persuasion,' as we might call them, offer a wealth of art, history, design, and popular culture for us to understand. The poster is a familiar part of our world, and we intuitively understand its role as propaganda, promotion, announcement, or advertisement."

Reaves' observations are especially relevant for the impressive array of aviation posters in the National Air and Space Museum's 1300+ artifact collection. Quite possibly the largest publicly-held collection of its kind in the United States, the National Air and Space Museum's posters focus primarily on advertising for aviation-related products and activities. Among other areas, the collection includes 19th-century ballooning exhibition posters, early 20th-century airplane exhibition and meet posters, and twentieth-century airline advertisements.

The posters in the collection represent printing technologies that include original lithography, silkscreen, photolithography, and computer-generated imagery. The collection is significant both for its aesthetic value and because it is a unique representation of the cultural, commercial and military history of aviation. The collection represents an intense interest in flight, both public and private, during a significant period of its technological and social development.

Copyright Disclosure for Orphaned Works

Whenever possible, the museum provides factual information about copyright owners and related matters in its records and other texts related to the collections. For many of the images in this collection, some of which were created for or by corporate entities that no longer exist, the museum does not own any copyrights. Therefore, it generally does not grant or deny permission to copy, distribute or otherwise use material in this collection. If identified, permission and possible fees may be required from the copyright owner independently of the museum. It is the user's obligation to determine and satisfy copyright or other use restrictions when copying, distributing or otherwise using materials found in the museum's collections. Transmission or reproduction of protected materials beyond that allowed by fair use requires the written permission of the copyright owners. Users must make their own assessments of rights in light of their intended use.

If you have any more information about an item you've seen in the Fly Now: The National Air and Space Museum Poster Collection, or if you are a copyright owner and believe we have not properly attributed your work to you or have used it without permission, we want to hear from you. Please contact pisanod@si.edu with your contact information and a link to the relevant content.

View more information about the Smithsonian's general copyright policies at http://www.si.edu/termsofuse

56" Smooth Contour Wheel

National Air and Space Museum
Relief Halftone/Screen print: Green, black, grey advertising print. Illustrated by technical drawing and 13 cartoon / schematics of the pieces of the machinery for sale.

Fly Now: The National Air and Space Museum Poster Collection

Throughout their history, posters have been a significant means of mass communication, often with striking visual effect. Wendy Wick Reaves, the Smithsonian Portrait Gallery Curator of Prints and Drawings, comments that "sometimes a pictorial poster is a decorative masterpiece-something I can't walk by without a jolt of aesthetic pleasure. Another might strike me as extremely clever advertising … But collectively, these 'pictures of persuasion,' as we might call them, offer a wealth of art, history, design, and popular culture for us to understand. The poster is a familiar part of our world, and we intuitively understand its role as propaganda, promotion, announcement, or advertisement."

Reaves' observations are especially relevant for the impressive array of aviation posters in the National Air and Space Museum's 1300+ artifact collection. Quite possibly the largest publicly-held collection of its kind in the United States, the National Air and Space Museum's posters focus primarily on advertising for aviation-related products and activities. Among other areas, the collection includes 19th-century ballooning exhibition posters, early 20th-century airplane exhibition and meet posters, and twentieth-century airline advertisements.

The posters in the collection represent printing technologies that include original lithography, silkscreen, photolithography, and computer-generated imagery. The collection is significant both for its aesthetic value and because it is a unique representation of the cultural, commercial and military history of aviation. The collection represents an intense interest in flight, both public and private, during a significant period of its technological and social development.

Copyright Disclosure for Orphaned Works

Whenever possible, the museum provides factual information about copyright owners and related matters in its records and other texts related to the collections. For many of the images in this collection, some of which were created for or by corporate entities that no longer exist, the museum does not own any copyrights. Therefore, it generally does not grant or deny permission to copy, distribute or otherwise use material in this collection. If identified, permission and possible fees may be required from the copyright owner independently of the museum. It is the user's obligation to determine and satisfy copyright or other use restrictions when copying, distributing or otherwise using materials found in the museum's collections. Transmission or reproduction of protected materials beyond that allowed by fair use requires the written permission of the copyright owners. Users must make their own assessments of rights in light of their intended use.

If you have any more information about an item you've seen in the Fly Now: The National Air and Space Museum Poster Collection, or if you are a copyright owner and believe we have not properly attributed your work to you or have used it without permission, we want to hear from you. Please contact pisanod@si.edu with your contact information and a link to the relevant content.

View more information about the Smithsonian's general copyright policies at http://www.si.edu/termsofuse

6 common phobias found in our collections

National Museum of American History

For some creepy fun before Halloween, a tour of common phobias through our collections.

1. The dark (nyctophobia)

Perhaps most pervasive in childhood, fear of the dark can still spook us as adults! Miners in the past got used to working in the dark. They used many different sources of light to guide their way underground, but many of those methods came with dangerous trade-offs. Oil-wick and carbide lamps could be hung on the brim of a cap, letting miners work quickly and efficiently in the dark, but their open flames could (and often did) ignite flammable gases. Deadly explosions were tragically common in U.S. coal mines until the early 20th century. If you’d like to learn more, check out the museum's expansive collection of mining lights and hats.

Black and white photo of miners in a mine sitting on a wooden bench

(Also, this 1897 mining journal may shed some light on the life of miners, including their harsh working conditions in the dark.)

2. Germs (germophobia or mysophobia)

While we may have the comforts of antibacterial hand gel, surgical masks, and modern medicine, previous eras had different soaps and cleansers that a germ-averse person might have turned to for their ailments.

Corrosive Soap

One ingredient in this Corrosive Sublimate Soap is mercuric chloride, which was used in early antibacterial soaps and is still used in skin-whitening soaps. Nothing to fear from mercuric chloride, except brain damage, kidney failure, and drooling

Tarkon Germicide and Antiseptic container

Also, anyone concerned with germs may have found solace in Tarkon Germicide and Antiseptic, with the following varied and myriad uses provided by the manufacturer: "Acid Mouth, After Shaving, Catarrh, Bad Breath, Cold Sores, Dandruff, Ear Troubles, Eye Troubles, Hives, Insect Bites, Odors, Piles, Pyorrhea, Sunburn, Women's Hygiene, Wounds, General Disinfecting and Deodorizing."

3. Dogs (cynophobia)

Black and white photo of man with dog

People scared of canines may not hold warm feelings toward Stubby the dog, but this pup was a brave companion to American soldiers. "Sgt. Stubby" found himself in a scary situation or two, serving in 17 battles during World War I. Once, he even managed to capture himself a German soldier! Upon returning home from the war, Stubby received fame and accolades, including visits to the White House and a meeting with General John J. Pershing.

Black and white photo of two men and one woman with dog wearing harness

Stubby lived on to strike fear in the hearts of his opponents when he became the mascot for the Georgetown Hoyas.

Taxidermy dog wearing vest covered in metals

4. Flying (aviophobia)

Illustration of a balloon with the name INTREPID on it and people watching it go up.

Imagine you have a fear of flying. Now imagine that it is the 1860s and you are an aerial spy floating in a hot-air balloon, trying to spy on the Confederates. Thaddeus Lowe, an aeronaut who conducted military reconnaissance in balloons, had no such fear, as he enthusiastically took to the sky in his balloon called the Intrepid, spying on Confederate camp and troop movements at the battle of Fair Oaks. While plenty of people may have balked at Lowe’s flying, President Lincoln was filled with wonderment and couldn't stop talking about the amazing floating spy machine.

Black and white image with trees, machinery, and people

5. Mice (musophobia)

What is it about mice that makes one shriek? That causes one to jump on the nearest available flat surface, as this 1892 stereograph depicts?

Person standing on a chair to escape a mouse, sepia image

Scientists who are afraid of mice must rise above it. The OncoMouse is a genetically modified laboratory mouse created in the mid-1980s to carry a specific gene that aids scientists in cancer research. Mallory Warner of the Division of Medicine and Science discusses the patented creature and the ethical concerns it raises surrounding animal research.

6. Thunder/Lightning (astraphobia)

Painting in wooden frame with flourishes. In an outdoor scene, a man holds string of a kite while a young boy watches.

Thunder and lightning aren’t so frightening. Well not to Ben Franklin, that is! While bolts of lightning snaking across the sky may frighten many of us, Franklin stayed outside to perform his famous kite experiment in which he attempted to prove that lightning was an electrical force. This painted panel dates to the early 19th century, when it was popular for volunteer fire companies to proudly decorate their engines for use in parades.  The panel depicts the famous scene in 1752 as Franklin and his son William (actually 21 years old at the time!) stand in the storm to observe the experiment.

Rebecca Seel works in the New Media and Communications and Marketing offices. She is terrified of spiders.

Posted Date: 
Thursday, October 27, 2016 - 09:00
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6. Panel: Our Role - (Re)Presenting America: The Evolution of Culturally Specific...

National Museum of the American Indian
The National Museum of the American Latino Commission's report recommending the establishment of a Smithsonian National Museum of the American Latino prompts debate concerning the value of "ethnic" or "culturally specific" museums. Thoughtful people ask whether the proliferation of museums dedicated to particular experiences or cultures contributes to the "balkanization" of the United States. Others observe that traditional museums have not represented our country's people and their achievements as fully as they should be. Ethnic/culturally specific museums, they note, provide different portals into what it means to be an American, and their programs provide depth and fullness of perspective, enriching our national narrative. These are serious questions that the Smithsonian seeks to address in a comprehensive, insightful way. By presenting various facets of the existence and practices of "ethnic/culturally specific" museums at the Smithsonian and elsewhere, this special symposium advances a vital discussion of a challenging subject. It provides an important step toward understanding the history of museums in matters of race, the development of "ethnic/culturally specific" museums, and the development of a cogent philosophy on these museums. #CulturalMuseums

7. Wayne Clough: Diversity - (Re)Presenting America: The Evolution of Culturally Specific Museums

National Museum of the American Indian
The National Museum of the American Latino Commission's report recommending the establishment of a Smithsonian National Museum of the American Latino prompts debate concerning the value of "ethnic" or "culturally specific" museums. Thoughtful people ask whether the proliferation of museums dedicated to particular experiences or cultures contributes to the "balkanization" of the United States. Others observe that traditional museums have not represented our country's people and their achievements as fully as they should be. Ethnic/culturally specific museums, they note, provide different portals into what it means to be an American, and their programs provide depth and fullness of perspective, enriching our national narrative. These are serious questions that the Smithsonian seeks to address in a comprehensive, insightful way. By presenting various facets of the existence and practices of "ethnic/culturally specific" museums at the Smithsonian and elsewhere, this special symposium advances a vital discussion of a challenging subject. It provides an important step toward understanding the history of museums in matters of race, the development of "ethnic/culturally specific" museums, and the development of a cogent philosophy on these museums. #CulturalMuseums
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