Why people go to museums (1)? Почему люди ходят в музеи?

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As a tour guide for a Japanese woman in the city of Beijing three years ago, I was amazed that she would be interested in the Chinese Culture and History Museum, which even Chinese pupils does not like to visit. Museum in my eyes used to be a really boring place, which could only display items that are dull and motionless. I thought Museums were dead. Until after I traveled to some places myself did I start to realize the life of museums.

A place consists mainly of its past and present in terms of time. When you are visiting one place, the existing scenery, streets and buildings give you chances to understand its present easily. But when it comes to the past of a place, things are different. With time going by, the past is always staying in the past. Sometimes with the new constructions, a place"s past can even be burnt into ashes.

In most cases, museums preserve part of the original appearance of a certain place and present plenty of information in terms of objects and pictures that one cannot obtain from the present.

Only when information from the present and that from the past are combined could one obtain a relatively integrate image of the place. That is why the Japanese woman insisted that she visit the Culture and History Museum in Beijing. Like most of other cities, Skyscrapers, glass walls and the modern street scenes are all over the place in this city. The red and gray walls, the palaces and small courtyards, which were typical scenes in the past, can only be found in the vintage photographs in the museum.

Thus, visiting museums is a very effective way to understand a place"s past, therefore one can get a whole picture of a place that one visits.

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