The American Research Center in Eygpt

LECTURE: Violence & Power in Ancient Egyptian Imagery and & Ideology

LECTURE: Violence & Power in Ancient Egyptian Imagery and & Ideology

LECTURE: Violence & Power in Ancient Egyptian Imagery and & Ideology

ABOUT THE LECTUREThis lecture will explore the development and use of images of violence in Egypt before the New Kingdom.  The well-known icons of kings triumphing over captives – either smiting them with a mace or, in the form of a griffon,trampling them – and the rarer images of battle are important sources for our understanding of the violent aspects of royal ideology.  Of particular importance in discussing how that ideology functioned is an examination of context and audience – where were such images located?  Who could see them?  How were they intended to react?  To address such questions this lecture will explore its theme by focusing on different contexts, including the royal tomb, divine temples, rock-carved monuments, and private tombs. Comparative images from other times and places will be used to suggest how universal the practice of picturing violence is, and how fraught the deployment of such images can be. 

ABOUT THE SPEAKER:  A native Californian, Laurel Bestock is an Associate Professor of Archaeology, Egyptology, and Art HisBestock, Laureltorat Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island.  She received her PhD in Egyptian Archaeology and Art from the Institute of Fine Arts, New York University. She directs excavations in Egypt at the site of Abydos, where she investigates early kingship. In the Sudan, she co-directs excavations at the Egyptian fortress of Uronarti, seeking to understand lifestyles and cultural interactions in a colonial outpost from nearly 4000 years ago. Her forthcoming book Violence and Power in Ancient Egypt: Images and Ideology before the New Kingdom is being published by Routledge this year.  For her next project, she hopes to work on a book focused on food and culture at Uronarti, both in ancient times and in the context of a modern excavation team camping in tents along the Nile. 
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