News from the Classroom … Trip to St Fagans

Second Year Module: ‘Approaches to History’

Students at St Fagans

Throughout the academic year the level two History students have been studying different approaches to history. This is partly in preparation for their final year dissertations, and partly to increase their understanding of the intellectual roots of their own discipline. (Read about this module here)

As part of this process, students are invited to consider the role of public history. Is it just history-lite? Is the heritage industry there just to provide us with a good day out? Can heritage be both scholarly and accessible? If so, how?

To help answer some of these questions, and to provoke many others, we all went on a day trip to St Fagans National History Museum. Beth Thomas, a curator at the museum, spoke to the students and highlighted some of the many political issues associated with creating a museum of Welsh life: What best represents Welsh life? Who decides what is Welsh? Where does history end and the contemporary world begin? Is there a decidedly Welsh experience in a global capitalist world?

The students then spent the afternoon looking around the site…and a good time was had by all as these pictures testify.

Fiona Reid

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