Letter: No place for a war in the museum world

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The Independent Online
DAVID LISTER identifies and - perhaps unintentionally - encourages a perception of a polarised museum profession, with reactionary national Goliaths at one extreme, and politically correct but poorly represented and stoneless local authority Davids at the other ('Museum training chief quits after 'whispers' ', 31 January). This is quite simply not the case. Criticism of Simon Roodhouse was articulated fairly evenly throughout the profession, as indeed was support.

For supporters of Mr Roodhouse to use his departure from the Museum Training Institute as an opportunity to exaggerate and exacerbate such differences as do, inevitably, exist between institutions of different types and sizes is both irresponsible and counter- productive to the health of a profession for which they express an undoubtedly genuine concern.

Given the present Government's evident philistinism and destructive fear of intellectual and cultural freedoms, the last thing that we should be doing is publicly devoting our energies to internal disputes.

Nichola Johnson

Director of Museology

University of East Anglia

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