Branding History at the Canadian Museum of Civilization
Canadian Journal of Communication , Volume 40 p. 165- 184
In October 2012, the Canadian Heritage Minister announced that the Canadian Museum of Civilization, the country’s largest and most popular museum, would be renamed the Canadian Museum of History. In addition to the new name, three strategies—a strategy of engagement, a strategy of authority, and a strategy of expansion—were elaborated by museum and government officials as part of the transformation. We examine these three strategies as an example of the Harper government’s attempt to “brand” Canadian identity and history in its own image, arguing that the strategies were designed expressly to paper over near-unilateral changes in the museum’s mandate and transformation. Ultimately, these changes have problematic implications for the democratic management of cultural production in Canada.