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Friday, April 26, 2019

PhD candidate position in Egyptology - University of Basel | University Positions

PhD candidate position in Egyptology

starting March 1st, 2020

"Crossing Boundaries. Understanding Complex Scribal Practices in Ancient Egypt" is a joint research project of the University of Basel, the Université de Liège and the Museo Egizio of Turin. This project is looking for a highly motivated PhD candidate to write a dissertation within the project's scope under the direction of A. Loprieno (Basel) and S. Polis (Liège). The three-year post is set to start on March 1st, 2020, but an earlier starting date is possible. The PhD candidate will be fully funded for a period of three years, be registered as a PhD student at the University of Basel and be housed in the Department of Ancient Civilizations, but will also regularly travel to Turin and Liège. The PhD dissertation should be completed by February 28, 2023.

Your position
We adopt a transdisciplinary approach to the issue of Egyptian scribal practices in order to cross the boundaries between archaeological and philological scholarship and better understand the so-called 'heterogeneous' papyri, which bear several texts and drawings belonging to various genres, such as maps, plans, accounts, poems, hymns and letters. In spite of their importance, they have never been studied as a coherent whole.
The papyri stem from the village of Deir el-Medina, a literate community which housed the families of the workmen for the royal tombs in the Valley of the Kings and the surrounding necropolis during the New Kingdom (c. 1350 1000 BCE). The most important collection of papyri from this site is kept at the Museo Egizio. The project aims to identify the fragments of heterogeneous papyri from this collection, to piece the fragments together and provide a digital reconstruction of the original documents, to study the variety of texts attested on each papyrus, to assess the numbers of scribal hands and reconstruct the history of these documents, to enrich the results with data coming from other ancient Egyptian archives of heterogeneous papyri, and to broaden the perspective by comparing the data from Deir el-Medina with complex scribal practices from other periods and places.

Academic scope of the PhD project
The advertised PhD dissertation project will be devoted to the understanding of complex scribal practice in Ancient Egypt on the basis of the heterogeneous Ramesside papyri in the Museo Egizio. The exact scope of the dissertation will be defined on the basis of the candidate's theoretical background and scholarly interests; it will involve the study and analysis of a certain number of heterogeneous papyri from the Turin corpus and include the identification of parallels with the help of Ramses Online as well as the investigation of their main material and cultural features. The expected results of the PhD project are on the one hand the online publication of a number of heterogeneous fragments within the Turin Papyrus Online Database (TPOP), on the other hand their conceptual analysis, which is expected to set new standards in humanities in view of its up-to-date use of digital resources within an open science perspective.

Your profile
Applicants should hold a Master's degree in Egyptology or related fields (Master's thesis is to be completed by start of the position), demonstrate a firm competence in Late Egyptian and Hieratic, be highly motivated to conduct transdisciplinary research at the crossroads of digital humanities, papyrology and museology, display a sufficient control of English and of other research languages, be able to work autonomously within an internationally and institutionally diverse environment, and be willing to travel on a regular basis and to present the project at scholarly meetings.

We offer you

  • A joint research project of the University of Basel, the Université de Liège and the Museo Egizio of Turin
  • The salary and the conditions of employment will be those of the University of Basel

Application / Contact
We are looking forward to receiving your complete application. Applicants should submit a motivation letter, a current CV (including a list of publications and contact details of two referees) and a copy of their academic degrees via the online application portal of the university (see button below) till August 9th 2019 . Applications which are not submitted via the online application portal of the university won't be considered. Questions about the position can be addressed to Professor Antonio Loprieno, Department of Ancient Civilizations, University of Basel, Petersgraben 51, CH - 4051 Basel (

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