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Bringing Back the Cabinet of Curiosities, Including a Brief and Wondrous History of the Wunderkammer, An Illustrated Lecture with Susan Harlan
Morbid Anatomy Museum
Brooklyn, NY
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Bringing Back the Cabinet of Curiosities, Including a Brief and Wondrous History of the Wunderkammer, An Illustrated Lecture with Susan Harlan
Date: Tuesday, April 19th
Time: 7pm
Admission: $8
Location: Morbid Anatomy Museum, 424 Third avenue, 11215, Brooklyn NY

The cabinets of curiosities of Renaissance Europe brought together objects from the realms of geology, archaeology, and natural history, as well as relics, art, and a healthy dose of the macabre. You might even hang an alligator on your ceiling. These spaces were intimately connected to the domestic sphere, but they also suggested a wide world beyond. And although Wunderkammer did not classify their contents, they are considered to be the precursor to museums.

Harlan will explore the history of these collections and discuss the process of transforming a small room in her own home into a Wunderkammer, complete with taxidermy, skulls, statuettes, beetles, butterflies, rocks, and fossils, as well as some modern elements such as fridge magnets, souvenirs, a glow-in-the dark scorpion paperweight, and her former dashboard hula girl. The lecture will include a special appearance by (the snow globe of) Claude the Albino Alligator from the California Academy of Sciences.

Susan Harlan is an English professor at Wake Forest University whose research focuses on cultural memory and the social life of objects. Her book Memories of War in Early Modern England: Armor and Militant Nostalgia in Marlowe, Sidney, and Shakespeare is forthcoming from Palgrave Macmillan. She also writes about objects, memory, and place (including an array of quirky museums) for venues including The Guardian US, The Morning News, Nowhere, The Toast, Public Books, Curbed, and Roads & Kingdoms.

Tickets are non-refundable unless the event is canceled.


Morbid Anatomy Museum (View)
424 A Third Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11215
United States




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