Who’s Allowed to Know What

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Who’s Allowed to Know What

Ed. Museum der Kulturen Basel, text(s) by Angus Bancroft, Isabella Bozsa, Alexander Brust, Tabea Buri, Ludovic Coupaye, Till Förster, Nanina Guyer, Karin Kaufmann, Richard Kunz, Stefan Leins, Stephanie Lovász, Réka Mascher-Frigyesi, Philipp Sarasin, Anna Schmid, Beatrice Voirol, graphic design by eyeloveyou GmbH


2018. 176 pp., 48 ills.


21.00 x 30.50 cm

ISBN 978-3-7757-4437-9

Top secret! Here, things are shown that no one is supposed to see: a catalog about the art of concealment

Secrecy is alluring! Already early anthropologists showed great interest in secret knowledge and secret societies, and, in the age of Wikileaks and the ongoing Internet privacy debate, the issue is still high on the list. The companion volume to the exhibition of the same title at the Museum der Kulturen Basel looks at secrecy from the perspective of social order. Secrecy creates boundaries between insiders and outsiders, between the informed and the uninformed. Access to secret knowledge means power, revealing it spells danger.

Contributions from current research in diverse fields uncover how secrecy comes into effect in different cultural settings, while in-depth portraits of arcane objects from the collections of the Museum der Kulturen Basel reveal that secrets not only have a hidden but very often also a visible, public dimension.

Exhibition: Museum der Kulturen Basel, 13. April 2018 - 21. April 2019

German Edition

  • Das Geheimnis

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