The American Research Center in Eygpt

Chapter Events

Chapter Events

October 2017


Tuesday, October 3, 2017 at 7:30 p.m.

Portland State University, Smith Memorial Student Union, Room 238

Chapter: Oregon

Free and open to the public

The blue lotus flower figures prominently in Egyptian religion, art and architecture. As a closed bud or open flower, it appears on the walls of temples, stone carvings and paintings, and it inspired the lines of tall columns. It is indelibly linked to ancient Egypt.

But it was more than an icon. The lotus contains four potent narcotic alkaloids that have been chemically identified. The ancient Egyptians understood their pharmacological properties and utilized the lotus in religious funerary settings.  In the Festivals of Drunkenness, the lotus was used by participants to eliminate all inhibitions and then indulge in gratuitous sex and ultimately pass out, hoping to see the goddess Hathor/Sekhmet/Bastet in the process.

Combining medical science and Egyptology, Dr. Benson Harer will describe the symbolic cultural values of the blue lotus and present evidence that the ancient Egyptians understood the narcotic effects of the lotus and used it in religious settings.

Educated at Princeton University and the University of Pennsylvania, Dr. Harer practiced medicine in San Bernardino for three decades, eventually serving as Director at Riverside County Regional Medical Center. A Clinical Professor of OB/GYN at Western University of Health Sciences, Dr. Harer was also an Adjunct Professor of Art at Cal State San Bernardino. He has written many articles in both medicine and Egyptology, including medical care in ancient Egypt and the narcotic and biologic properties of the lotus. He analyzed the CT scans of King Tutankhamun, proving that the king was buried without his heart and anterior chest wall, theorizing that Tut was killed by a hippo.  

Dr. Harer has served on the ARCE Board of Governors and was a founding member of ARCE chapters in Orange County, CA and Seattle. He has participated in many archaeological expeditions to Egypt and Sudan and has lectured regularly about medicine in Egypt.


Saturday, October 7, 2017 at 5:00 p.m.

Geoff Emberling, Kelsey Museum of Archaeology, University of Michigan

LaSalle Banks Room, Oriental Intitute, 1155 E 58th Street, Chicago, Illinois

Chapter: Illinois


Thursday, October 12, 2017 at 6:00 p.m.

Institute for the Study of the Ancient Word, 15 East 84th Street

Dr. Nicholas Warner, Research Fellow, American University in Cairo

Chapter: New York

Free and open to the public; reception to follow. Please RSVP

Saturday, October 14, 2017 at 1:30PM

Lecture title to be announced.

Sponsored by Clinton and Carol Owen.

The Bowers Museum, Norma Kershaw Auditorium.
Chapter: Orange County, California
Saturday, October 14 at 2:00 p.m.
Nancy Hoskins
The Textile Museum, 701 21st Street NW, Washington, D.C.
Chapter: Washington, D.C.
Co-sponsored by the International Hajji Baba Society
Sunday, October 15, 2017 at 3:00PM

Dr. Josef Wegner, University of Pennsylvania

Room 20, Barrows Hall

Chapter: Northern California


Thursday, October 19, 2017 at 7:00 p.m.

The National Arts Club, 15 Gramercy Park South

Yekaterina Barbash, Associate Curator for Egyptian, Classical and Ancient Near Eastern Art, Brooklyn Museum

Chapter: New York

Free and open to the public; reception to follow. Please RSVP


Saturday, October 21, 2017, 3:30 p.m.

University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology

Chapter: Pennsylvania

Dr. Kevin M. Cahail, Curatorial assistant, Egyptian Section, Penn Museum; Lecturer, History Dept., Penn State Abington campus

The tombs of the New Kingdom Temple cemetery consisted of modest, vaulted mud-brick substructures, with small pyramids once standing above them.  Yet, recent Penn Museum excavations at the site have shown that these humble tombs once contained a staggering number of individuals, some of whom can be placed into the historical fabric of New Kingdom history.

Burials include all ages, making this site one of potentially great importance to our understanding of non-royal life during the late Eighteenth and early Nineteenth Dynasties.  In this lecture, Dr, Cahail will discuss the cemetery, its tombs and inhabitants, and explore how recent findings in the field fit with the history of Abydos and Egypt as a whole. 

Entrance fees are $10 for the general public, $7 for Penn Museum members and UPenn Staff & Faculty, $5 for Students with ID, and FREE for ARCE-PA members and children under 12.


Tuesday, October 24, 2017 at 7:00 p.m.

University of Washington, Smith Hall 211, Seattle

Chapter: Northwest, Seattle, WA

US Office: 909 North Washington St. Suite 320, Alexandria, Virginia, 22314 p: (703) 721-3479
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