The purpose of this independent study project is to discover the way that the institutional ethics of museums are applied in the processes of acquisition and display of Greek antiquities that relate to burial from the 6th through the 4th century B.C. I collected data from twelve burial objects and through interviews with curators at the Cleveland Museum of Art and the J. Paul Getty Museum. This data was analyzed through the processes of content analysis of the museum labels and confirmed through application of the results to the existing literature. These objects and their life histories, or lack thereof, serve as a commentary on the practice of displaying culturally significant objects in museum spaces and show how the history of collecting has influenced this museum culture. Elizabeth Marlowe’s concept of indifference to context along with my own analysis leads me to the conclusion that the issues behind the ethics associated with museums and their displays are not entirely of their own choosing but are echoes of the historical past that led to the creation of museums.


Frese, Pamela

Second Advisor

Florence, Monica


Sociology and Anthropology; Classical Studies


Arts and Humanities


Museum, Anthropology, Provenance, Burial

Publication Date


Degree Granted

Bachelor of Arts

Document Type

Senior Independent Study Thesis



© Copyright 2020 Nina Ruth Hooper Rusmore