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Tuesday, November 23, 2021

Northern Cal. ARCE Call for Applications - $1500 Eugene Cruz-Uribe Memorial Student Grant


Call for Applications 

Fourth Annual Eugene Cruz-Uribe Memorial Student Grant
American Research Center in Egypt, Northern California Chapter

The Board of Directors of the Northern California Chapter of the American Research Center in Egypt (ARCE) is offering one grant of $1,500 to a qualified undergraduate or graduate student during the 2021-22 academic year.
Deadline for applications is Wednesday, December 15, 2021. The winner will be recognized during the chapter's Jan. 9, 2022 public lecture and the check disbursed at that time. 

Applicants must either be enrolled at a Northern California college or university (Monterey to the Oregon border) or come from a hometown within that area.

They must be pursuing a degree that incorporates Egyptian anthropology, archaeology, art, history, museum studies or language, or Coptic or Arabic studies in any period. Proof of enrollment may be required. 

To apply, students must submit 1) a CV and 2) a brief proposal (250-500 words) of how they will use the grant. Possible uses include – but are not limited to – research, travel, or preparation of a student-led exhibition, course or media project. The grant will be awarded based on merit. In case of a tie, the winner will be determined by a random drawing from the qualified applicants.

The grant honors a beloved chapter member, the late Professor Eugene Cruz-Uribe, an Egyptologist specializing in the Greco-Roman period who was killed in a bicycle accident March 12, 2018.  A recently retired professor of history at Indiana University East at the time of his death, Prof. Cruz-Uribe taught at California State University, Monterey Bay from 2007 to 2013.

Applicants for the grant in his honor should send their materials by email to by the December 15 deadline.  

Northern Cal. ARCE Lecture Dec. 12: Racism, Egyptological stereotypes and the intersection of local and international at Kushite Tombos

The American Research Center in Egypt, Northern California Chapter, and the Near Eastern Studies Department, University of California, Berkeley, invite you to attend a virtual lecture by Dr. Stuart Tyson Smith, UC Santa Barbara:
"Backwater Puritans"? Racism, Egyptological stereotypes and the intersection of local and international at Kushite Tombos

When: Sunday,  December 12, 2021, 3 PM Pacific Time

Zoom Lecture. A registration link will be automatically sent to ARCE-NC members. Non-members may request a registration link by sending email with your name and email address to Attendance is limited, so non-members, please send any registration requests no later than Friday, December 10.

Glenn Meyer
ARCE-NC Publicity Director

Tombos panorama - 2017 (Photo courtesy of Stuart Tyson Smith)

About the Lecture:

Egyptological and more popular perceptions of Nubia and the Kushite Dynasty (c. 747-654 BCE) have framed Kush as a periphery to civilized Egypt, unsophisticated interlopers in Egypt and the broader Mediterranean world during the first millennium. Depictions of Nubians from earlier periods of Egyptian history, like Tutankhamen's painted box, reinforced these ideas of Nubian inferiority compared to Egypt and the Near East. But to what extent was Nubia a "backwater" to "effete and sophisticated" Egypt as John Wilson once asserted? For the Persians, depictions of Nubians and other foreigners presenting gifts at Persepolis represented the diversity of the empire paying homage to the Persian king as an all-lord whose rule encompassed numerous peoples. Archaeological evidence supports the more cosmopolitan Persian view of Kush against older racist Egyptological stereotypes of "barbaric" Nubians.

It is clear from recent archaeological work at Tombos and elsewhere that Nubia was not an unsophisticated backwater. Objects with Egyptianizing motifs in the international style asserted a cosmopolitan social status that connected their owners to an international elite culture that spanned Nubia and Egypt, and extended across the Mediterranean during the Iron Age. Yet consumption of this material culture was mediated by cultural preference, and balanced by objects like pyramids and black topped pottery that reflected ties to an Egyptian colonial and deeper Nubian past. The Kushite civilization that flourished for a thousand years was not an imperfect imitation of ancient Egypt, as some Egyptologists have asserted. Instead, features taken from Egypt and the Mediterranean world were adapted and thoroughly integrated with local practices and belief systems.

About the Speaker:

Stuart Tyson Smith received his PhD in Archaeology from UCLA, and is Professor of Anthropology and Director of the Institute for Social, Behavioral, and Economic Research at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Smith's research centers on the civilizations of ancient Egypt and Nubia with a theoretical focus on the social and ethnic dynamics of colonial encounters and the origins of the Napatan Kushite state, whose rulers became Pharaohs of Egypt's 25th Dynasty. He has published on the dynamics of Egyptian imperialism and royal ideology, the use of sealings in administration, death and burial in ancient Egypt and Nubia, and the ethnic, social and economic dynamics of intercultural interaction between ancient Egypt and Nubia. He has participated in and led archeological expeditions to Egypt, and since 1997, to Sudanese Nubia, where he co-directs the UCSB-Purdue University Tombos expedition to the third cataract of the Nile with bioarchaeologist Prof. Michele Buzon and Prof. Mohamed Faroug Ali of Africa International University, Khartoum. In addition to fieldwork, he is engaged in a long-term study and write-up of the UCLA excavations conducted by the late Alexander Badawy at the fortress of Askut in Sudanese Nubia. In a new line of research, Smith applies a postcolonial approach to modern scholarly and popular views of ancient Egypt as not truly African and Nubia as its subordinate, confronting the intersection between racism and longstanding academic and political bias. In 1993, he took a break from academia as Egyptological Consultant for the hit MGM movie 'Stargate,' commenting on the script and recreating spoken ancient Egyptian for the film. He returned to Hollywood consulting in 1998 and 2000 for the Universal remake of 'The Mummy' and its sequel, 'The Mummy Returns,' and most recently for 2018's web production 'Stargate Origins: Catherine.'

About ARCE-NC:

For more information, please visit,,, or To join the chapter or renew your membership, please go to and select "Berkeley, CA" as your chapter when you sign up.

Sunday, November 21, 2021

Books interview: Christina Riggs | Times Higher Education (THE)

Books interview: Christina Riggs

The author of Treasured: How Tutankhamun Shaped a Century on finding girls and women in history, archaeology's 'heroic' age and the cultural impact of 'Egyptomania'

November 22, 2021
Source: Andy Crouch

What sorts of books inspired you as a child?
I devoured fiction and non-fiction alike, thanks to the public library. I wish I knew the title and author of a Marie Antoinette biography, written for children, which I checked out many times. It made history feel alive – and something that girls were part of, too. I also loved Little Women (Jo, of course) and Frances Hodgson Burnett's A Little Princess, long before I knew anything about the British Empire.

Which book first attracted you to ancient Egypt and Tutankhamun?
In Treasured, I talk about one of them: a 1970s Reader's Digest volume called The Last Two Million Years. I can still smell the glue and feel the pages. Our family copy was lost in a house fire, but my mother and brother gifted me a second-hand copy many years later.

What accounts, celebratory or more critical, can you recommend about Howard Carter and the "heroic" age of archaeology?
Elliott Colla's Conflicted Antiquities: Egyptology, Egyptomania, Egyptian Modernity opened my eyes. Why hadn't I learned anything about the political context of the Tutankhamun excavation in my Egyptology training – including Howard Carter's failed legal case against the Egyptian government, which saw his British lawyer characterise Egyptians as thieves? I wouldn't necessarily recommend celebratory accounts of colonial-era archaeology, but C.  W. Ceram's Gods, Graves and Scholars: The Story of Archaeology was an astonishing success. Ceram was the pen name of Kurt Wilhelm Marek, a member of the Wehrmacht's propaganda corps during the Second World War who later settled in the US.

Where can one find good accounts of the wider phenomenon of "Egyptomania" in art since the time of Napoleon?
Books on "Egyptomania" tend to divorce interest in ancient Egypt from wider sociopolitical contexts. Scott Trafton's Egypt Land: Race and Nineteenth-Century American Egyptomania is fantastic – and can I plug my own book Egypt, in Reaktion's Lost Civilizations series, which is aimed at a general audience? For Napoleon's expedition to Egypt, try Juan Cole's Napoleon's Egypt: Invading the Middle East – the title says it all – and Nina Burleigh's Mirage: Napoleon's Scientists and the Unveiling of Egypt, which is an engaging read.

What is the last book you gave as a gift, and to whom?
My Durham history colleague Rebecca Clifford's Survivors: Children's Lives after the Holocaust, shortlisted for the Wolfson History and Cundill History prizes – to someone important to me.

What books do you have on your desk waiting to be read?
I'm in the middle of Michael Rothberg's The Implicated Subject: Beyond Victims and Perpetrators. Next up are Shawn Michelle Smith's Photographic Returns: Racial Justice and the Time of Photography and Omnia el-Shakry's The Arabic Freud: Psychoanalysis and Islam in Modern Egypt. On my nightstand, for Italian practice, is Serena Dandini's La vasca del Führer (or The Führer's Bathtub), a novel about the photographer Lee Miller.

 Christina Riggs is professor of the history of visual culture at Durham University. Her latest book is Treasured: How Tutankhamun Shaped a Century (Atlantic).
--   Sent from my Linux system.

In Photos: Exclusive sneak peek into preparations for Luxor's Avenue of Sphinxes reopening - Tourism - Egypt - Ahram Online

In Photos: Exclusive sneak peek into preparations for Luxor's Avenue of Sphinxes reopening

Amr Kandil , Sunday 21 Nov 2021

As Egypt prepares to reopen the restored Avenue of Sphinxes in Luxor in a major ceremony, Ahram Online provides its readers a sneak peek into the much-awaited event.

Luxor s
Photos taken by Anas Fathallah showing the final preparations and rehearsals underway in anticipation for Thursday's event of the reopening of the Avenue of Sphinxes in Luxor

Luxor is getting ready to host a glamorous ceremony to reopen the ancient walkway linking the temples of Luxor and Karnak on Thursday 25 November.

The 2,799-metre-long the Avenue of Sphinxes would be one of the world's largest open-air museums, with hundreds of ram-head and sphinx statues on both sides.

Many of the sphinxes that had lined the avenue since it was built during the reign of the 13th-Dynasty Pharaoh Nectanebo I were restored with the help of conservators and archaeologists. 

The reopening ceremony is expected to be a re-enactment of the Ancient Egyptian Opet Festival, which was celebrated in Luxor when the region was known as Thebes.

Authorities also carried out major restoration work on the road and the temples of Karnak and Luxor in recent months.

The Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities has invited foreign ambassadors and dignitaries in Egypt and a number of public figures to attend the ceremony, according to media reports.

The reopening of the Avenue of Sphinxes is a result of Egypt's recent intensive efforts to restore historic sites and promote tourism.

Below are photos taken by Anas Fathallah and exclusively obtained by Ahram Online showing the final preparations and rehearsals that are currently underway in anticipation for Thursday's event:

Short link:


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New secrets revealed in discovery at Heliopolis, Egypt's most ancient capital - Al-Monitor: The Pulse of the Middle East

New secrets revealed in discovery at Heliopolis, Egypt's most ancient capital

Egyptian and German archaeologists have been working for 15 years to uncover the ruins of a city, the center of sun worship, in the Matariyyah region east of Cairo. This month, they revealed the remains of one of its temples belonging to King Nectanebo I.
Egyptian archaeologists work during restoration at the            Baron Empain Palace in Heliopolis, Cairo, Egypt, Sept. 24,            2018.

CAIRO — The Egyptian-German archaeological mission operating at ​Matariyyah archaeological area announced Nov. 5 a new archaeological discovery. It consists of parts of the western and northern facade of the temple of King Nectanebo I (380-363 B.C.) located at the center of the Great Temple of Heliopolis at Matariyyah, east of Cairo.

Archaeologists say that the new archaeological discovery sheds light on more secrets related to the City of the Sun, Heliopolis, which is the most ancient capital in the world and most ancient religious, scientific and philosophical center, before Egypt coalesced around 3100 B.C.

The mission, which has been working in this archaeological area for about 15 years, found many basalt blocks engraved with the names of parts of Lower Egypt, including blocks that represent the nomes of Heliopolis, in addition to blocks of the other nomes in Lower Egypt, the secretary-general of the Supreme Council of Antiquities, Mustafa Waziri, said in a statement.

According to the statement, Dietrich Rau, head of the German team, said that the western part of the main axis of Nectanebo's Temple was studied. Different evidence point to buildings dating back to the Middle Kingdom, the 22nd Dynasty of Egypt (Osorkon I, 925-890 B.C.) and a shrine to god Shu and goddess Tefnut commissioned by Psamtik II (595-589 B.C.).

The team unearthed parts of Ramses II statue, part of the baboon statue, a pedestal and parts of a quartzite obelisk from the reign of Pharaoh Osorkon I, and parts of worship items such as an offering table for Pharaoh Thutmosis III (1479-1425 B.C.), according to Rau.

The excavations revealed evidence on the activity of the 13th Dynasty's kings and the Ptolemaic era.

Ayman Ashmawy, head of the Ancient Egyptian Antiquities Sector at the Supreme Council of Antiquities, told Al-Monitor that the discovery is very important and is a continuation of the recent discoveries in the sun temples and the royal support they received. He said that it also gives a clearer picture of the places that were destroyed in later ages in Ain Shams (east of Cairo).

In May 2016, the archaeological mission working there unearthed for the first time the eastern gate of the temple of Pharaoh Nectanebo I of the 30th Dynasty of Ancient Egypt, who spent most of his reign defending his kingdom from reconquest of the Persians with the assistance of Sparta or Athens from time to time. That was before parts of the western and northern gate were found last week, he noted.

Ashmawy explained that the inscriptions in the stones refer to the 13th and 14th year of Nectanebo's reign (367-366 B.C.), as well as the materials used in the temple and their dimensions. He noted that some of the stones have incomplete inscriptions, probably insinuating that no further decorative work was performed on the temple after the death of Nectanebo I in 361 B.C.

He said that these discoveries point to the continued royal support and investment in the sun temple of Ra, the creator god of Ancient Egypt, in Heliopolis.

The sun god Ra was associated with one of the oldest creation theories emanating from the school of Heliopolis, known as the Ennead theory (a group of nine deities in Egyptian mythology worshipped at Heliopolis), according to which the world before the existence of the gods was an endless ocean (Nun, god of the water) out of which the great god Atum (Ra-god of the sun) appeared and rested on a hill above those waters. When he felt lonely, he created other companions, including Shu (god of air) and Tefnut (deity of moisture), who got married and gave birth to Nut (sky goddess) and Geb (earth god).

The discovery indicated that the temple was then used as a quarry to build obelisks and temples in the Roman era, and that in the Islamic eras the Egyptians used their stones to build their homes and other facilities.

The Egyptian official said that unearthed antiquities will be displayed in the open museum in Matariyyah after the completion of the restoration works.

In February 2018, the Egyptian Ministry of Antiquities inaugurated the Grand Egyptian Museum in Masala, in Matariyyah to tell the history of the most ancient Egyptian city, Heliopolis.

The museum includes 135 artifacts dating back from the Old Kingdom to the New Kingdom, most notably the obelisk of King Senusret I, and other obelisks of the area, including part of the obelisk of Pharaoh Teti I, one of the kings of the 6th Dynasty.

Hussein Abdel Basir, director of the Antiquities Museum at the Bibliotheca Alexandrina, said that the discovery is very important and confirms that Matariyyah is located in a sea of ​​statues.

He told Al-Monitor that the city of Heliopolis is a burial ground east of the Nile, similar to Saqqara that is a burial ground west of the Nile, and Luxor in the south.

That city was very famous throughout the ages, and according to the Bible, Prophet Joseph was married there to a daughter of Potiphar, a high priest of Heliopolis, as well as Virgin Mary's tree in Heliopolis and the Arab Islamic conquest, he said.

However, the city disappeared and was destroyed by the silt that accumulated over the ages due to the flooding of the Nile River, similar to many archaeological areas in the Delta region and Cairo. The slums built in recent decades made things worse, according to Abdel Basir.

Nevertheless, he noted that many archaeological discoveries have yet to be unearthed in Matariyyah area where remnants and ruins of the ancient religious city are still buried. These discoveries will revive the city's famous landmarks and reveal them to the public.

--   Sent from my Linux system.

How Tutankhamun Got His Gold | Lost Treasures of Egypt - YouTube

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Friday, November 19, 2021

Fwd: December Workshop: Thinking Outside the Sarcophagus

ARCE Register Now!



December Workshop 2021 

*Public Access*

December 4, 2021


Register Now

Thinking Outside the Sarcophagus: Exploring Diverse Career Paths  

with Julia Troche, Rachel Leslie, Chance Coughenour, Julia Hsieh, Elizabeth Waraksa, and Nigel J. Hetherington


Did you know that in addition to academic jobs your degree in Egyptology can get you high paying,  stimulating, and prestigious careers in a wide range of fields in some of the country's top institutions and companies? While the R-I academic job might be ideal for some, it is not the only path, and many other paths, at "lower status" institutions or outside of academia entirely can offer more benefits, flexibility, higher salaries, and as much cachet as an R-I position. These are not "second-best" or "fall back" options and require their own set of skills and preparations. This ARCE panel includes a wide range of participants who will share practical advice as to how you can turn your Egyptology (or Egyptology adjacent) degree into a successful career.