Spring 2024 History GU4723 section 001

Politics of Archaeology

Call Number 11567
Day & Time
M 2:10pm-4:00pm
311 Fayerweather
Points 4
Grading Mode Standard
Approvals Required None
Instructor Zeynep Celik
Method of Instruction In-Person
Course Description

“Who owns antiquities?” “Who owns culture?” These questions that appear frequently today in both popular and scholarly discourse are deeply embedded in political issues and have a long history, going back to the nineteenth century. The seminar will investigate the origins of the battles over antiquities and their links empire building, colonialism, Orientalism, modernity, power, identity construction, racial hierarchies, and money. The chronological frame is from the 1850s to1914 and the geographical focus in the Ottoman Middle East, which was the major theater of contestations. We will look closely into two areas: archaeological excavations and museums. If objects were unearthed (“discovered”) in the first, they were displayed in the second; the Middle East was crowded with the first, while the major museums were in the West, with the exception of the Museum of Antiquities in Istanbul. We will also consider the vast and complex human landscape around the antiquities. In addition to archaeologists, this community included emperors, sultans, diplomats, spies, artists, inspectors, bureaucrats, technocrats, and workers, hence a cohort of individuals from many nationalities, economic strata, ethnic groups, and religions.

Web Site Vergil
Department History
Enrollment 14 students (15 max) as of 8:07PM Monday, July 22, 2024
Subject History
Number GU4723
Section 001
Division Interfaculty
Note Add to waitlist & see instructions on SSOL
Section key 20241HIST4723W001