living history

Book Review: The Routledge Handbook of Reenactment Studies by Agnew, Lamb & Tomann (eds)

Roeland Paardekooper (NL)
Re-enactment studies are booming, just like re-enactment, living history and role play are. This handbook, therefore, is a good introduction for those interested in the more academic aspects of re-enactment. However, as is often the case with an academic-only approach, this book is not meant for those interested in the backgrounds of re-enactment per se. The authors are academics, writing for their peers...

Book Review: Mittelsteinzeit, ein Leben im Paradies? by Werner Pfeifer

Michael Müller (DE)
Considering actual studies about the analysis of ancient DNA is an important question, if only the lifestyle or the population, too, changed when hunter-gatherers became farmers and stockbreeders. The results point so far towards the latter possibility. However, the foragers of the Northern European Ertebølle culture preserved their lifestyle for one millennium, even though they lived in neighboring areas...

Engaging Diverse Audiences at the Archaeological Open-Air Museum Düppel in Berlin – Practical Examples and New Strategies

Julia Heeb (DE)
2018 EXARC in Kernave
***In 1939, a boy called Horst Trzeciak was playing on a piece of land on the outskirts of Berlin. While playing, he found a number of pottery sherds. In an exemplary fashion he brought the sherds to the “Märkisches Provinzialmuseum”, which was, at that time, the city museum of Berlin...

Book Review: The Living History Anthology, Perspectives from ALHFAM by Martha B. Katz-Hymann et al. (eds)

Roeland Paardekooper (NL)
Many open-air museums in the United States are members of the Association of Living History, Farm and Agricultural Museums (ALHFAM). Only a small portion of the ALHFAM members are agricultural museums, however living history in a museum context is what unites the members...

Colonial Williamsburg: Archaeology, Interpretation & Phenomenology

Peter Inker (US)
2018 EXARC in Kernave
***When I began investigating this conference I was unclear as to how well EXARC’s focus on experimental archaeology would blend with International Museum Theatre Alliance (Imtal)’s approach of museum theatre and interpretation. They seem after all, two very different disciplines...

How to Make a Medieval Town Come Alive – the Use of Volunteers in Living History

Pia Bach and
Thit Birk Petersen (DK)
2018 EXARC in Kernave
***For over 25 years The Medieval Centre/Middelaldercentret in Nykøbing F. Denmark has used volunteers to inhabit the reconstructed medieval town of Sundkøbing. To combine the use of volunteers and living history is not easy or something that happens spontaneously. It is hard work and requires patience, strength and firmness, but also...

Conference Review: Hands on History ReConference, 2-4 November 2018

Helen Bowstead Stallybrass (UK)
Copenhagen 2 November, and a warm welcome received at the National Museum in Copenhagen. What better way to start a conference than with colouring flags and glitter? Well, it certainly was a great icebreaker for an international conference on re-enactment, for people from all over the globe speaking several different languages. Being asked to write a review, I wondered how best to approach this...

Interview: JAPKE – The Female Viking Power-house of Lejre

Christine Sonne-Jensen (DK)
Jutta Eberhards has been working with drama and living history for over 30 years. Born in the Friesland district in Germany, Jutta has over the years become a power-house in the management group of Sagnlandet Lejre – The Land of Legends (www.sagnlandet.dk). She has been tirelessly working to uphold the standards of the educational method that she and her colleagues developed...

Event Review: EXARC at the Times and Epochs Festival, Moscow, Russia

E. Giovanna Fregni (IT)
In August 2018, members of EXARC participated in Moscow’s Times and Epochs Festival for the third year . The annual festival is held on park boulevards that surround the inner city, providing an ideal green space for reenactors to recreate various periods of Russia’s history. The main sites were located in Tverskaya Square, Nikitsky, Passion and Tver Boulevards, on Kamergersky Lane and Profsoyuznaya Street...

Current Trends in Annual Historical Re-Enactments Events in Catalonia. Uses of Cultural Heritage

Antonio Rojas Rabaneda (ES)
The project “Re-enactments events in Catalonia” seeks to identify and analyse annually occurring events that make use of cultural heritage and history for the purposes of tourism, economic promotion and dissemination, and for other festive, recreational or educational ends. The activity programmes of all active events currently held in Catalonia were analysed and quantitative data provided in order to...