Translated Titles

Truth or Fiction: Narrative Boundaries of Scientific Exhibitions




張婉真(Wan-Chen Chang)

Key Words

科學展覽 ; 敘事理論 ; 真實 ; 虛構 ; 機械恐龍 ; scientific exhibition ; narrative theories ; truth ; fiction ; robot dinosaur



Volume or Term/Year and Month of Publication

26卷3期(2012 / 07 / 01)

Page #

61 - 75

Content Language


Chinese Abstract

做為一種有其道理的理解過去的方法,敘事已從僅為「小說/虛構」(fiction) 的一個面向之邊緣地位躍身為各種關注「歷史/故事」(history)研究的學科的中心。展覽可以是意念的表述、文化的詮釋或立場的表態,它在當代被賦予高度的公共價值。從敘事理論的觀點,展覽可以是一種敘事,涉及敘述者與其對象之間的關係,對於其接受者可以產生高度的影響力。然而展覽這樣一個敘事所傳達的內容是忠實於現實的「經驗」,或者是忠實於理想的「虛構」,或者是兩者的綜合體,是本文所欲探討的第一個問題。展覽是否「如實」呈現真實,被視為一種倫理上的課題。然而既有研究指出,科學論述經常遠非真實材料未經修飾的呈現,且虛構的故事可能比現實更真實更哲學。因而何為「真實」成為值得進一步思考的問題。為了凝聚本文的研究意識,文章以國立自然科學博物館生命科學廳的恐龍廳做為研究場域,以展出的機械恐龍為主要研究對象,透過展覽文本分析與博物館資深研究員與觀眾訪談的質性分析,探討科學類展覽敘事之真實與虛構如何界定?它擁有何種的敘事特徵?而對於觀眾的接受,它如何產生意義?等接續問題。本文試圖分析科學展覽敘事也經常奠基於既定成規,而真實與虛構的邊界也非絕對。科博館的觀眾對於恐龍廳的展示內容抱持著信任的態度,他們既能分辨機械恐龍的真假,在適當的說明與空間規劃的前提下也能接收重要的科學訊息。

English Abstract

As a method for understanding the past, narrative has leapt from a marginal position to the center of numerous disciplines that impinge on historical research. An exhibition can be an implied formulation, an interpretation of culture or a statement of position. It can also be a form of narrative, involving a relationship between the narrator and audience which can exert a high degree of influence on the audience. Whether the content conveyed by the narrative of an exhibition is faithful to reality (experience) or to an ideal (fiction), or a combination of the two, is the first question that this article seeks to explore. Whether an exhibition is realistic or not presents a truly ethical question. There are researchers that argue that scientific discourse is not always an unadorned presentation of authentic materials, and that fictional stories can be truer and more philosophical. "Truth" can therefore be turned into an issue to be deliberated further. Focusing the scope of our research, we took as our research arena the Dinosaur Gallery in the Life Sciences Hall of the National Museum of Natural Science, and the robot dinosaurs located in this gallery as our research subjects. Through textual analysis of the exhibition and qualitative analysis of interviews with a senior researcher and museum visitors, we explored how the truth and fiction of stories narrated by scientific exhibitions are defined. What are their narrative features? In terms of acceptance by audiences, how do they generate significance? This study attempts to analyze why the narratives of science exhibitions are often founded on existing conventions and why the boundaries of truth and fiction are not absolute. The results showed that the National Museum of Natural Science's audience maintains a credulous attitude towards the exhibits in the Dinosaur Gallery. The audience is able to tell what is real and what is false about the robot dinosaurs and, assuming appropriate explanations and planning of space, to receive important scientific messages.

Topic Category 人文學 > 人文學綜合
人文學 > 藝術
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