Franceâs history museums have undergone extensive and rapid change over the last two to three decades. Following on from major changes in the world of Franceâs art museums; the major projects that characterise the new take on history in the museum lead us to ask what they tell us about the relationship between history in the museum and academic historiographical practice. History museums are perhaps more related to the present and the needs of society than to the practice of historical erudition in the traditional sense. Is there such a thing as an ideal formula for these new history museums or displays? In what sense can one observe a radically new vision of heritage that refuses a nostalgic mode of representation but also any kind of spectacular merchandising and dramatizing of history; whilst leaving room for critical historical knowledge?