Every week the Center for Ancient Studies sends a list of events related to the ancient world in the Philadelphia area to interested members.

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Back to Sumer - Recent results from the Italian Excavations at Tell Zurghul, ancient Nigin, in Southern Iraq
Saturday, 16 June 2018
Davide Nadali, Andrea Polcaro, Sapienza Università di Roma, Università degli Studi di Perugia
Penn Museum Widener Auditorium, 3260 South St.
PLEASE SEE ATTACHED FLYER
Sponsored by: Penn Museum, Center for Ancient Studies


Penn-Leiden Colloquia on Ancient Values X, Between Dusk and Dawn: Valuing Night in Classical Antiquity
Thursday, 14 June 2018
Opening Session: June 14 - 3:45 PM | Room 419, Fisher-Bennett Hall Day 2: June 15 - 8:30 AM | Orery Pavilion, Kislak Center, 6th floor of Van Pelt Library Day 3: June 16 - 8:30 AM | Room 419, Fisher-Bennett Hall Details at: http://www.classics.upenn.edu/about/penn-leiden-colloquia-ancient-values-x
Sponsored by: Department of Classical Studies, University of Pennsylvania, Center for Ancient Studies


Lyric in Spacetime
Wednesday, 2 May 2018
Silver Center for Arts and Science Room 503, 32 Waverly Place or 31 Washington Place, NYU
A panel discussion on lyric poetry in its dynamic performance settings, geographies, and cosmologies, from ancient Greece to renaissance France. Panelists: Barbara Kowalzig (NYU), Alessandro Barchiesi (NYU), Timothy Duffy (NYU) PLEASE SEE ATTACHED FLYER
Sponsored by: Center for Ancient Studies at NYU


Ranieri Colloquium on Ancient Studies: The Origins of the Arts: Expressive Culture of Early Homo Sapiens
Thursday, 26 April 2018
Silver Center for Arts and Science Room 102, 32 Waverly Place or 31 Washington Place, NYU
Program and details: http://as.nyu.edu/ancientstudies/events/spring-2018/the-ranieri-colloquium--the-origins-of-the-arts.html
Sponsored by: NYU’s Center for Ancient Studies


CAS 2018 Annual Symposium: “Cities in the Ancient World”
Saturday, 21 April 2018
Penn Museum Rainey Auditorium, 3260 South St.
9:15 Roderick Campbell (ISAW): “Ancient Urbanism and the Great Settlement Shang” 9:45 Lisa LeCount (University of Alabama): “The Preclassic ‘City’ of Actuncan: How collective action created and transformed an early ritual center in the Maya lowlands” 10:45 Heather D. Baker (University of Toronto): “Journey to the Late Babylonian City: The final phases of Mesopotamian urbanism” 11:15 Luca Maria Olivieri (Università di Bologna): “Bazira/Vajirasthana/Barikot: An early-historic city in northern Gandhara (Swat)” 1:30 Lothar Haselberger (University of Pennsylvania): "From Plato to Philly: Planning the best city" 2:00 Michael Frachetti (Washington University in St. Louis): "Urban Scaling, Nomadic cities, and Network Modularity: New paradigms in ancient urbanism" 3:00 Timothy R. Pauketat (University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana): "The Spirits of Ancient Cahokia and the Case for American Indian Urbanism" 3:30 Renata Holod (University of Pennsylvania): “On Streets, Markets, Lanes and Houses in not–so–Ancient Cities” Details: https://www.sas.upenn.edu/ancient/symposia.html Speaker abstracts and bios: https://www.sas.upenn.edu/ancient/speaker_bio2018.html
Sponsored by: Center for Ancient Studies


CAS Symposium Keynote: “The Role of Temples in Mesopotamien Cities: The case of Ur in the Old Babylonian period”
Friday, 20 April 2018
Dominique Charpin , Collège de France
Cohen Hall Room 402, University of Pennsylvania
The joint excavation of the Penn Museum and the British Museum at Tell Muqayyar between 1922 and 1934 under the direction of Sir Leonard Woolley has provided a very detailed image of Ur, one of the main Mesopotamian cities during three millennia. Thanks to the Ur-online project, direct access to the complete documentation of the expedition is now possible, which sometimes allows better interpretations. The new excavations in 2015 and 2017 contribute to expand our knowledge. This keynote lecture will try to show how temples were not only the places where gods resided, and were cared by priests who dressed them, feed them, etc.: they played a specific role in the city, in relation to the place and role of the divinity within the pantheon. The moon-god Nanna-Sin, main divinity of Ur, had a special role in matter of justice, and we will see how a special building named Dublamah was the place where lawsuits were settled. Nanna-Sin was also the divinity of cattle: numerous texts allude to his huge herds, and dairies were directly linked to his temple. We will also see the role priests played in education; a particular stress will be put on an intendant of the temple of the goddess Ningal, named Sin-nada,whose house has been discovered in 2017. Details: https://www.sas.upenn.edu/ancient/symposia.html
Sponsored by: Center for Ancient Studies


The Evolution of Archaeological Research in Duhok Province, Kurdistan Region
Wednesday, 18 April 2018
Hasan Ahmed Qasim, Director of Duhok Antiquities and Museum
Fisher-Bennett Hall Room 244, University of Pennsylvania
PLEASE SEE ATTACHED FLYER
Sponsored by: Center for Ancient Studies, Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations, University of Pennsylvania


Before the Greeks came to Colchis: Technology and Society in the Land of the Golden Fleece 1500-500 BC
Tuesday, 10 April 2018
Nathan Erb-Satullo, Oxford University
Penn Museum Nevil Classroom, 3206 South St.
Sponsored by: Graduate Group in Art and Archaeology of the Mediterranean World, University of Pennsylvania, Center for Ancient Studies


Gothic Arts: An Interdisciplinary Symposium
Friday, 23 March 2018
Van Pelt-Dietrich Library Kislak Center, University of Pennsylvania
This interdisciplinary conference, Gothic Arts, celebrates the polyvalent definition of ars in the long thirteenth-century of the medieval francophone world. Panels will examine the various arts—cultural products of thirteenth-century France—from a profoundly interdisciplinary perspective, including the conceptual, visual, material, legal, sonic, and literary. Details and a full schedule can be found at: http://web.sas.upenn.edu/gothicarts/
Sponsored by: The Kislak Center for Special Collections, Department of the History of Art, University of Pennsylvania, Center for Ancient Studies


Indian Country in the American Imagination: How Perception of Native American Cultures Shaped Johnson v. M'Intosh
Tuesday, 20 March 2018
S. Margaret Spivey-Faulkner, Harvard University
Penn Museum Widener Auditorium, University of Pennsylvania
Early Native American public policy was created by men of European descent who themselves were steeped the Western intellectual tradition. Here, we take a look at the how the late-Eighteenth Century, Virginia aristocratic understanding of Native American peoples and cultures continues to reverberate through modern Native American public policy. The scholar George Wythe and his students John Marshall and Thomas Jefferson will be examined specifically, with an eye toward how their own intellectual heritage contributed to the Johnson v. M'Intosh Supreme Court decision.
Sponsored by: Center for Ancient Studies


CAS Graduate Student Conference: "Afterlives"
Saturday, 24 February 2018
Penn Museum Widener Auditorium, University of Pennsylvania
Program of speakers and abstracts at: http://www.sas.upenn.edu/ancient/grad-conf.html
Sponsored by: Center for Ancient Studies


CAS Grad Conference Keynote: The Other Book of the Dead, an Essential Item for the Afterlife of Ancient Egyptian Kings
Friday, 23 February 2018
David P. Silverman, University of Pennsylvania
Penn Museum Widener Auditorium, University of Pennsylvania
The Book of the Dead (the modern term for the ancient Egyptian Book of Going Forth in the Day) is usually described as a roll of papyri with inscribed funerary texts that often included illustrated vignettes. From the New Kingdom on, it became part of the equipment Egyptians wanted for their Afterlife. The spells, however, were not limited to papyri and appear on coffins, figurines, jewelry, amulets, chests, shrines, wrappings, shrouds, tomb walls, etc. The lecture focuses on this latter group and its use of these magical texts. Reception to follow in Lower Egyptian Gallery. Full conference program at: http://www.sas.upenn.edu/ancient/grad-conf.html
Sponsored by: Center for Ancient Studies


What would an anthropology of Mesopotamian writing look like?
Wednesday, 21 February 2018
Martin Worthington, Cambridge University, ISAW
Penn Museum Room 345, University of Pennsylvania
Writing, though important, was a rather marginal phenomenon in most people’s experience of life in Ancient Mesopotamia, even if they were literate. This talk will survey this fact in multiple sectors of the Mesopotamian lived experience, and then tease out some of its implications for how to understand Mesopotamian writings and outlooks.
Sponsored by: Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations, University of Pennsylvania, Center for Ancient Studies


THE RELEVANCE OF JULIUS CAESAR TODAY: A Book Launch for The Landmark Julius Caesar
Wednesday, 7 February 2018
Silver Center for Arts and Science Hemmerdinger Hall, 32 Waverly Place or 31 Washington Place, NYU
6:00 p.m. Welcome and Introduction Matthew S. Santirocco, NYU Phil Terry, Reading Odyssey 6:15 p.m. The Landmark Ancient Histories series Robert B. Strassler, Editor, The Landmark Ancient Histories series 6:35 p.m. Reflections on Julius Caesar Kurt A. Raaflaub, Brown University; Editor, The Landmark Julius Caesar 7:00 p.m. Caesar in the Classroom Ronnie Ancona, Hunter College and CUNY Graduate Center 7:30 p.m. Reception This event is free and open to the public, but an RSVP is required. To RSVP, please visit: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/the-relevance-of-julius-caesar-today-tickets-41322048359
Sponsored by: The NYU Center for Ancient Studies


Discursive Landscapes of the Caucasus: Ancient Histories and Modern Maps
Tuesday, 30 January 2018
Lara Fabian, Universität Freiburg
Penn Museum Widener Auditorium, University of Pennsylvania
The Caucasus (a region that includes the territories of Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia and parts of southern Russia) is perhaps best known to the modern audience as a place of intense border conflicts. The roots of these disputes are multifaceted, but land claims based on interpretations of ancient history have been a recurring theme. In this talk, I explore how cartographic understandings and traditions of mapping in the Russian Imperial, Soviet and contemporary Eurasian spaces have featured in these disputes, and discuss the ramifications of this history for researchers working in the region today.
Sponsored by: Center for Ancient Studies


PSCO: Nurses, Midwives, Healers, and Talmudic Encyclopedism
Thursday, 7 December 2017
Lennart Lehmhaus, Freie Universität Berlin
Cohen Hall Room 254, University of Pennsylvania
PLEASE SEE ATTACHED FLYER
Sponsored by: Penn Humanities Forum, Center for Ancient Studies


Innocuous Abuses: Etic Terms for Landscapes in South Asia
Tuesday, 28 November 2017
Divya Kumar-Dumas, University of Pennsylvania
Penn Museum Widener Auditorium, University of Pennsylvania
As scholars, we make terminological propositions: two scholarly terms, “royal garden” and “port city” have been employed to contextualize late antique archaeological finds at Sigiriya (Sri Lanka) and Mamallapuram (India). As landscapes, contexts can resist our terms. An intellectual history of terminology should be required to undo our errors. Yet, too often, these terminologies enter into discourse as assumptions. In contemporary South Asia, such “facts” about places can precipitate violent consequences. In this talk, I will trace the 20th century genealogy of two innocuous etic terms to explore the work they have done to our understanding of the past.
Sponsored by: Center for Ancient Studies


The Rose-Marie Lewent Conference - The Dead Sea Scrolls at 70
Thursday, 16 November 2017
New York University’s Center for Ancient Studies will host “The Dead Sea Scrolls at 70,” a two-day conference that will address many of the central questions regarding the contribution of the Scrolls to our understanding of the Bible and the history of Judaism and Christianity, on Thurs., Nov. 16 and Fri., Nov. 17 at NYU’s Silver Center for Arts and Science, Hemmerdinger Hall, 100 Washington Square East (enter at 32 Waverly Place or 31 Washington Place). The event, the annual Rose-Marie Lewent Conference, marks 70 years of scholarship since the Scrolls were discovered near the Dead Sea. In addition to considering the role of digital technologies in deciphering these 2,000-year-old manuscripts, the conference will also serve as a retrospective: participants will examine how three generations of scholars have explored the questions that dominate their own intellectual projects. The full program may be viewed at: http://as.nyu.edu/ancientstudies/events/fall-2017/the-rose-marie-lewent-conference---the-dead-sea-scrolls-at-70.html
Sponsored by: Center for Ancient Studies, NYU


A Contested Legacy: Greece and Rome in American Political Discourse
Tuesday, 14 November 2017
Joe Ferrell, University of Pennsylvania
Penn Museum Widener Auditorium, University of Pennsylvania
Recent claims by the alt-right to represent the values of Greek and Roman antiquity (along with other antiquities) have taken many by surprise, and caused some indignation. But partisan and self-interested interpretations of this "heritage" have been part of American political discourse from the beginning. This talk will focus on a few examples from different sides of the political spectrum in order to provoke discussion of what role those of us who study antiquity should play in this debate.
Sponsored by: Center for Ancient Studies


A Lost Queen of the Sun? Tel Beth Shemesh, the Age of Amarna, and the Mysterious "Mistress of the Lions"
Monday, 13 November 2017
Zvi Lederman, Director, Tel Beth Shemesh Expedition, Israel
Penn Museum Classroom 2, University of Pennsylvania
Historians have long puzzled over a mysterious female ruler in prebiblical Canaan known only from two clay letters from Telel-Amarna in Egypt—the capital of the heretical pharaoh Akhenaten and his wife Nefertiti. In this lecture, Dr. Zvi Lederman, director of the Tel Beth Shemesh expedition in Israel, will share newly discovered evidence that may reveal who this queen was and her possible connection to the court of Akhenaten and its embrace of a revolutionary monotheistic cult of the sun.
Sponsored by: Center for Ancient Studies


36th Northeast Conference on Andean and Amazonian Archaeology and Ethnohistory
Saturday, 14 October 2017
Penn Museum , University of Pennsylvania
This annual conference is a 2-day series of lectures and posters about recent and ongoing archaeological, ethnographic, and ethnohistorical research in the Andean and Amazonian regions of South America. Friday, October 13th: Friday night Reception (7:30-9:30) Saturday, October 14: Presentations (8:30-5:05) Sunday, October 15: Presentations (8:30-11:45) Visit website for event details and registration: https://www.penn.museum/conference/andean/
Sponsored by: Penn Museum, Department of Anthropology, University of Pennsylvania, Center for Ancient Studies


Petrified Politics: The Archaeological Site of Tiwanaku in the Bolivian Public Sphere
Tuesday, 10 October 2017
Clare Sammells, Bucknell University
Penn Museum Widener Auditorium, University of Pennsylvania
Center for Ancient Studies 2017-2018 Lunchtime Seminar Series: “The Usage of Antiquity in Modern Times: The Manipulation of the Past” Tiwanaku, Bolivia has long been a focus for political action, theater, and symbolism. As a pre-Columbian archaeological site, it has been used for over a century to evoke ideologies ranging from the roots of the modern nation-state to indigenous resistance to national oppression. Bolivia’s first indigenous president, Evo Morales, took office here in 2006, and Tiwanaku’s symbols have been used prominently under his administration. But Tiwanaku is not merely a place or a source of iconography; it is widely understood to be animate in its own right, thus raising the question of who/what constitutes a “political actor.” The presentation will be about 30 minutes long, followed by discussion.
Sponsored by: Center for Ancient Studies