Prof. Morag Kersel Lecture - "Lessons from Looting: People, Pots, and Planes at the Dead Sea, Jordan"

Thursday, October 15, 2015
Sewall Hall 570

Early Bronze Age (3600-2000 BCE) artifacts from the Dead Sea Plain in Jordan have long held a fascination for locals, pilgrims, and tourists, which can often be tied to a substantiation of faith based on the material past.  These pots have led varied lives as grave goods, as excavated artifacts, as looted objects, and as collected items revered in private homes and in exhibition cases in museums.  Demand for these archaeological objects has resulted in decades of illegal excavation and the destruction of the archaeological landscape.  tracking he movement of these pots is an important aspect of understanding the emergence of prehistoric urbanism and increasing social complexity at these early mortary and domestic landscapes.  Archaeological evidence, archival documents, ethnographic interviews, and aerial surveys using drones (fixed-wing and hexacopeters) all provide valuable clues from the past and present, enhancing our knowledge of Early Bronze Age society during this vibrant period.

This talk is sponsored by the Anthropology Departmet and the Program in Ancient Mediterranean Civilizations at Rice