The Rockwell is Questioning Identity in 2019. Read all about it>>
  • Poking at Normal: Museums and the History of Real People

    Wednesday, April 24, 2019
    6:00 pm - 7:00 pm

    Add to Calendar 04/24/2019 6:00 PM 04/24/2019 7:00 PM America/New_York Poking at Normal: Museums and the History of Real People

    Lecture by Katherine Ott, Curator in the Division of Medicine and Science at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History

    Rockwell Members: Free, Not-Yet-Members: $10, Students: $5

    Advance reservations recommended; space is limited. Click here to register

    Lecture Description

    Since at least the mid-1800s, Americans have been obsessed with measuring, sorting and comparing people. The search for the composite college co-ed, the Fittest Family, and Norma and Normman were amusing parlor games but also became serious attempts to exclude people from civil rights, citizenship, and the human family. Grounded in objects and history, Poking at Normal: Museum and the History of Real People explores the material and visual culture of finding “normal” and what it means for museums today.

    Exclusive Opportunity for Silver Dollar Society Members

    Members of the Silver Dollar Society are invited to join an exclusive dining experience with leaders from the Smithsonian. As part of our Questioning Identity lecture series, a post-lecture dinner with the speaker will be offered in the Museum galleries following the February, March and April lectures.

    Space is extremely limited and will be reserved on a first come, first served basis. Register now

    About Katherine Ott

    Katherine Ott, Ph.D., is a curator in the Division of Medicine and Science at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History. She is the author or co-editor of three books and has curated exhibitions and published on such topics as the history of disability, medicine, polio, HIV and AIDS, skin, and scrapbooks. She received the 2016 Society for Disability Studies Senior Scholar Award, is an OAH Distinguished Lecturer, and teaches a graduate course in American Studies at the George Washington University. Ott tweets @amhistcurator about her work.

    Lecture by Katherine Ott, Curator in the Division of Medicine and Science at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History

    Rockwell Members: Free, Not-Yet-Members: $10, Students: $5

    Advance reservations recommended; space is limited. Click here to register

    Lecture Description

    Since at least the mid-1800s, Americans have been obsessed with measuring, sorting and comparing people. The search for the composite college co-ed, the Fittest Family, and Norma and Normman were amusing parlor games but also became serious attempts to exclude people from civil rights, citizenship, and the human family. Grounded in objects and history, Poking at Normal: Museum and the History of Real People explores the material and visual culture of finding “normal” and what it means for museums today.

    Exclusive Opportunity for Silver Dollar Society Members

    Members of the Silver Dollar Society are invited to join an exclusive dining experience with leaders from the Smithsonian. As part of our Questioning Identity lecture series, a post-lecture dinner with the speaker will be offered in the Museum galleries following the February, March and April lectures.

    Space is extremely limited and will be reserved on a first come, first served basis. Register now

    About Katherine Ott

    Katherine Ott, Ph.D., is a curator in the Division of Medicine and Science at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History. She is the author or co-editor of three books and has curated exhibitions and published on such topics as the history of disability, medicine, polio, HIV and AIDS, skin, and scrapbooks. She received the 2016 Society for Disability Studies Senior Scholar Award, is an OAH Distinguished Lecturer, and teaches a graduate course in American Studies at the George Washington University. Ott tweets @amhistcurator about her work.