The answer to question 1 is easier these days because, in the UK at least, there is more effort to make collections available (Birmingham Collections Centre springs to mind as somewhere that is encouraging the public to engage with stored material) and we do make much available online these days. One of the arguments for digitisation that I have found very effective during the last decade is that it does enable us to make public collections more accessible, especially where the original is too fragile for permanent or frequent display.
and as for question 2 - I had just been trying to calm down after reading that art critic Brian Sewell had been saying that local authorities should sell off their collections (his understanding of the value of culture has been questioned as a consequence of that statement)...
Try to get people to imagine a world with no past, no culture...absolutely none...for a start, they wouldn't have words or pictures to describe what it would be like...
Janet E Davis
--- On Tue, 30/11/10, Mark Hall <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> From: Mark Hall <[log in to unmask]>
> Subject: Re: [BRITARCH] 'Archaeology under threat in UK'
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Date: Tuesday, 30 November, 2010, 13:34
> As an archaeologist for the BLM in
> Nevada, I would agree with Vince's view.
> And then once you do get the importance through to them,
> then be prepared for
> two other thorny
> questions: 1) "why the hell do you guys lock everything up
> in a museum and put
> so little of it on display"; and/or
> 2) "why the hell don't you sell some of these
> points/bifaces, etc. on eBay or
> sumpthin' if there is a budget
> Best from the farther shore, MEH
> >I don't think that the problem is getting people to
> realise that
> >archaeology / heritage is *interesting*: it's
> translating that into
> >getting them to recognise that it is *important*,
> something much more