This book traces the psychology, history, and theory of the compulsion to collect. As well as institutional collections it considers those that reflect a fascination with the ephemeral, exotic, or just plain curious.
"[A] brilliant book . . . a good read. Analysis of the relationship of collecting to identity, memory, and pyschosexual development raises fascinating questions."—The Modern Review
"[I]t is by challenging and expanding upon previous ideas and histories of collecting that the book offers ways of rethinking not only the nature of collecting but also the nature of museum practice."—Art History