Museilagen - styrning eller frihet? en kvalitativ undersökning av museiprofessionellas relation till och uppfattningar av museilagens funktion
Sammanfattning: The aim of this master’s thesis is to examine how museum professionals perceive and relate to Swedens newly instituted museum law. The museum law (SFS 2019:977) came into effect in august of 2017, and at this moment there are no larger-scale studies examining the effects of the law. This thesis is intended to serve as a time document, reflecting the perceptions that existed in the spring of 2020. At the time this thesis was written a number of events in Sweden have put the law to the test. To fulfil the aims the study consists of ten semi-structured interviews with museum professionals from art and design museums as well as cultural history museums, at state, regional and municipal levels. It uses a thematic analysis to process the material and to find latent themes. The latent themes are as follows Approaches to the museum law and The impact of cultural policy. Chantal Mouffe's theories of democracy and political structures constitutes the theoretical framework of this thesis, and a perspective of sociology of law is used to understand the informants' approach towards the law. We found that there are different ways to perceive the law and that the law can be either strictly or freely interpreted. The strict or free interpretation of the law is dependent on which level of governance the museum is located on, each museum's individual economic circumstances and historical background. Furthermore, this thesis shows that the museum professionals' relations to politicians and officials can be placed on a scale ranging from stable to unstable relations. It also highlights a feeling that there is a cultural policy threat where culture and museum institutions can be used as political tools. The importance of a definition of the museum that underlines the collection as the core of the museums and that differentiates the museum from closely related institutions, is also demonstrated by this study.
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