Pay Attention to that Woman Behind the Curtain!
(The following post was written by Reagan Smith)
Reagan Smith is a Summer 2018 Intern at the National Museum of America History in the Division of Culture and the Arts with Ryan Lintelman, Entertainment Curator as her supervisor. Reagan has always been intrigued by the art of storytelling. There are a seemingly infinite number of ways a story teller can choose to get their message across to their audience. However, it wasn’t until relatively recently that Reagan realized that the story tellers themselves – their lives, the sociopolitical contexts of their upbringings, and thus their implicit biases – matter just as much as the stories.
American history includes so many more important figures and stories than the ones we most commonly think of or learn about in school. That is to say, by increasing representations of diversity, we may more accurately reflect our past and the important roles that so many individuals played to shape our society. Reagan is assisting NMAH in their upcoming exhibition that explores this concept through the history of American entertainment. She is researching visual aids to complement the objects going on display, but also working to make the collection more publicly accessible by cataloguing objects. Reagan hopes that in the final exhibition, visitors from all backgrounds get a broader picture of our shared story and find a sense of belonging and empowerment in it.