Museums aren't just buildings that house and display old items. They are, in their ideal form, a way to preserve memory and history, and even to offer a way for contemporaries to learn from the past in the hope of a better future.
That's the ideal, of course, and Thailand still has a long way to go to establish a solid museum culture. To this end, last month the Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn Anthropology Centre gathered over 60 local museums from all over the country for the 3rd Local Museums Festival. The idea is to strengthen the operation of local museums, to popularise them with the public and to provide networks among the museums. The festival is also an intermediary where local communities that have created their own museums can show their works and tell their stories to urban society.
As rural museums provide different dimensions to local history and the specificity of their existence and problems, the collection of museums at the festival was put together under the concept "Wisdom Fights Crises" _ with the "crises" divided into war and politics, natural disasters, the economy, illness and cultural change.
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