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    The power of museums : identity and nationalism in Andalusia by Tani, Krista Ann Sakae

    This thesis explores the roles that museums in Andalusia, Spain play in constructing and reflecting a sense of identity and nationalism. Andalusia is composed of imagined communities defined by their particular histories and cultural contexts, and museums are central in navigating the variability in the region’s collective memory. Museums emphasize certain aspects of the region’s history and culture and exclude others in the process of constructing narratives. By observing twenty-six museums in Andalusia, categorized as archaeology museums, history museums, ethnographic museums, and cultural interpretation centers, it is possible to identify elements central to defining the region and its inhabitants. Examining the way in which particular events and cultures are highlighted or silenced, and the way in which the past is constructed in relation to the present, reveals the power the museums hold in creating identities and perceptions of places and people.