The rise of complex societies that we call civilizations was a major turning point in human history. At about 5500 years ago in Eurasia and at approximately 3000 years ago in Mesoamerica, the earliest civilizations arose from Neolithic farming villages and towns. The regional cultural patterns formed early on in Mesopotamia, Egypt, Pakistan-India, China, Mesoamerica, and western South America tended to shape civilizations for millennia to follow. Governments, bureaucracies, international trade, monumental constructions, and religious institutions, to name a few core aspects, became the norm for these focal regions. With time, their influence gave rise to secondary states on their periphery as their influence spread.
Archaeology has been a major avenue to understanding ancient civilizations around the world, sometimes closely tied to History if writing was well developed. Since the 18th and 19th century, archaeologists have found and described the literal foundations of historically known and unknown civilizations. Through excavations, they have revealed forts, buildings, tombs, and all manner of objects and tools made and used in past civilizations. Austen Layard (Nineveh, Iraq), Heinrich Schliemann (Troy, Turkey, and Mycenae, Greece), Sir Arthur Evans (Knossos, Crete), Howard Carter (Valley of the Kings, Egypt), Sir John Marshall (Harappa, Pakistan), and Alfred Maudslay (Palenque, Mexico) are some of the better known pioneers of a long tradition of digging up and documenting ancient cities and monuments. Today’s archaeologists incorporate many high-tech tools such as remote sensing and computer-based geographic information systems (GIS) to better understand the extent and complexity of large sites and monuments.
This year’s Stigler Lecturers present close-up perspectives about four major areas of civilization. Dr. Joukowsky initiates the series with her presentation on the great temple site of Petra in Jordan. Next, Dr. Dorman leads us to the temples and texts of Luxor, some of the most famous in ancient Egypt. In the spring, Dr. Ashmore provides us with a view of conceptual space and the built environment in Mesoamerica. Finally, Dr. Murowchick guides us to ancient Chinese civilizations and the foundations for subsequent Chinese dynasties. The afternoon colloquium presentations will stress methods and research designs used in recent archaeological investigations in these respective world regions.
These Stigler Lecturers bring important insights about the nature and dynamics of civilizations to campus. Please take an opportunity to meet our speakers at the informal receptions held in their honor after their evening lectures.
October 6-7, 1999
Martha Sharp Joukowsky Ph.D.
Professor, Center for Old World Archaeology and Art and Department of Anthropology, Brown University
Scientific Applications in Use at the Petra Great Temple Project
Oct. 6, Giffels Auditorium
The Petra Great Temple: Seven Years of Brown University Excavations
Oct. 7, Giffels Auditorium
Martha Sharp Joukowsky is an internationally known Middle Eastern scholar and Old World archaeologist. She has had a distinguished career as a field archaeologist in Jordan, Lebanon, Turkey, Greece, Italy, and Hong Kong and as an officer in professional organizations. Dr. Joukowsky has served as the Director of the Brown University Excavations of the Petra Great Temple Project since 1992. Dr. Joukowsky received her BA degree from New York University, her MA from the American University of Beirut, and her Ph.D. in archaeology from the University of Paris-Sorbonne. Prior to her joining the Brown University faculty in 1979, she held professional appointments at a number of institutions, including the American University of Beirut, the Hong Kong Archaeological Society, New York University, and Rutgers University. Dr. Joukowsky has served as a Trustee of Brown University, as the President of the Archaeological Institute of America, as a Trustee and Editorial Board member of the American Schools of Oriental Research, as Treasurer of the Association of Field Archaeology, and she is a Registered Professional Archaeologist of the Society of Professional Archaeologists. She is the author of 10 books and over 100 articles and chapters. Among her books are A Complete Manual of Field Archaeology: Tools and Techniques of Field Work for Archaeologists (Prentice-Hall, 1980), Early Turkey: An Introduction to the Archaeology of Anatolia from Prehistory Through the Lydian Period (Kendall-Hunt, 1996), and Petra: The Great Temple, Vol. 1, Brown University Excavations 1993-1997 (1998). Dr. Joukowsky has also published extensively in the American Journal of Archaeology and in the American Schools of Oriental Research Bulletin.
November 10-11, 1999
Peter F. Dorman Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Oriental Institute and Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations, University of Chicago
Millennial Clash: The Role of Monumental Epigraphy in Egyptian Archaeology
Nov. 10, Giffels Auditorium
Archaeological Methods in Concert: Artisan Workshops and Cosmic Symbolism in Ceramic Sculpture from Ancient Egypt
Nov. 11, Giffels Auditorium
Peter Dorman is one of the foremost Egyptologists and epigraphers. He has served as a principal interpreter of Egyptian writing through his extensive publications and lectures presented at major universities and museums throughout the world. Dr. Dorman served from 1989-1997 as the Field Director of the Oriental Institute’s Epigraphic Survey. The Survey maintains "Chicago House" at Luxor, one of the preeminent research facilities for the study of ancient Egypt. Dr. Dorman has focused on monuments and their hieroglyphic writing at Luxor, but has also carried out research in the Nile Delta. Particularly significant is his leadership in the recording, verifying, restoring, and preserving of monumental artwork and writing. Prof. Dorman is active in the American Research Center in Egypt, and is a member of several professional associations for Egyptologists. After receiving his BA degree from Amherst College and serving in the U.S. Navy, Dr. Dorman received his Ph.D. from the University of Chicago. He was on the Metropolitan Museum of Art staff between 1980-1988, when he became Associate Director of the Epigraphic Survey at the Oriental Institute. He is responsible for many research funding awards made to Egyptian scholarship, including awards from the U.S. Agency for International Development, the Getty Foundation, and the Xerox Foundation. Dr. Dorman is the author/editor of six books and monographs and over two dozen articles, chapters, and reviews about ancient Egyptian civilization. Among his books are The Monuments of Senenmut: Problems in Historical Methodology (Kegan Paul Ltd., 1988), Lost Egypt (3 vols., coauthor and editor, The Oriental Institute, 1992), and Reliefs and Inscriptions at Luxor Temple (Vols. 1 and 2, coauthor and editor, The Oriental Institute, 1994 & 1998).
February 2-3, 2000
Wendy Ashmore Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Department of Anthropology, University of Pennsylvania; Associate Curator, The University of Pennsylvania Museum
Studying Civilization’s Foundations: Recent Settlement Archaeology at Xunantunich, Belize
Feb. 2, Giffels Auditorium
Deciphering Ancient Cityscapes: Principles of Maya Civic Planning
Feb. 3, Giffels Auditorium
Wendy Ashmore is a senior Mesoamerican scholar and well-known authority on Maya civilization. She has directed extensive archaeological fieldwork in Belize, Honduras, and Guatemala, and has worked in Mesoamerica for the past 25 years. From her involvement in settlement archaeology for many years, Prof. Ashmore has recently focused on the use and interpretation of space, including the spatial and social organization of the domestic built environment. This includes the articulation of household and other community components within the social, political, economic, and ideological order. Dr. Ashmore received her BA degree from the University of California, Los Angeles, and her Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania. She taught at Rutgers University during the 1980s, and joined the University of Pennsylvania faculty and museum staff in 1992. Dr. Ashmore’s field research at such sites as Xunantunich, Copan, and Quirigua has been funded by many grants from such sources as the National Geographic Society, the National Science Foundation, and the National Endowment for the Humanities. These projects have included long-term studies of Mayan regions, which in turn have led to extensive publications written about them by Dr. Ashmore and her colleagues. Dr. Ashmore is the author or coauthor of over 10 books and 40 journal articles and chapters. Among the latter are Archaeology: Discovering Our Past (with R.J. Sharer, Mayfield Publishing Company, 1987), Household and Community in the Mesoamerican Past (with R.R. Wilk, University of New Mexico Press, 1988), and Archaeologies of Landscape: Contemporary Perspectives (editor with A.B. Knapp, Blackwell Publishers, 1999).