Egyptology Todayby Richard H. Wilkinson
Pub. Date: 11/30/2007
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Egyptology Today examines how modern scholars examine all aspects of ancient Egypt, one of the greatest of all ancient civilizations. In essays by a team of archaeologists, curators, scholars and conservators who are actively involved in research or applied aspects of Egyptology, this book looks at the techniques and methods that are used to increase our understanding of a distant culture that was as old to the Greeks and Romans as these cultures are to us.
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Table of ContentsIntroduction: the past in the present: Egyptology today Richard H. Wilkinson; Part I. Methods: Paths to the Past: 1. Archaeology and Egyptology Kent Weeks; 2. History and Egyptology Donald Redford; 3. Medical science and Egyptology A. Rosalie David; Part II. Monuments: Structures for this Life and the Next: 4. Site survey in Egyptology Sarah Parcak; 5. Epigraphy and recording Peter Dorman; 6. Monument and site conservation Michael Jones; Part III. Art and Artifacts: Objects as Subject: 7. Art of ancient Egypt Rita Freed; 8. Ancient Egypt in museums today Arielle Kozloff; 9. Artifact conservation and Egyptology Susanne Gansicke; Part IV. Texts: The Words of Gods and Men: 10. The Egyptian language James P. Allen; 11. Ancient Egyptian literature John L. Foster and Ann L. Foster; 12. Egyptian religious texts Ronald Leprohon; Afterword: the past in the future: tomorrow's Egyptology Richard H. Wilkinson.
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Egyptology Today is a collection of essays edited by Richard H. Wilkinson. To be more precise, one could say it is a volume of essays written by profoundly Euro centric scholars on the state of Euro centric Egyptology. This profoundly euro-centric intellectual paradigm rest firmly on the works of Hegel, Junker, Reisner, Breasted, Erman and the many other European writers and thinkers. To understand this volume of essays one must first understand the UNSTATED PREMISES of the standard eurocentric paradigm. Crucial to understanding the UNSTATED PREMISE is the opinions of Hegel (and Gobineau). Both men classified black people as being between mankind and animals. Black African people contributed nothing to the development of human civilization. According to Herr Hegel black people were a "nonhistorical" people, a people at the "threshold of history". Civilization had its birth in, Mesopotamia; the East- Asia is the Mother of all. Thus all civilizations found in Africa came from the "East" or from "fusions of people" or from "invaders" from various parts of Asia-or even Europe. Egyptology today is caught in the grip of this centuries old dogma; taught from kindergarten to graduate schools and it permeates American culture. Unfortunately this race based intellectual paradigm has also been taught worldwide, especially in the study of the ancient black African peoples we now call "ancient Egyptians". When asked to produce any evidence of an Asian, European or a Semitic origin for "ancient Egypt", we are pointed to "authorities", speculations and migration theories, "accepted interpretations", "serious scholars" or erudite "suggestions" or even assertions that are not to be questioned. This tactic is used throughout this collection of essays. On p.125, 126, Rita Freed offers some of her interpretations of the Namer Pallet. Freed offers this comment about the "Eastern" influences on the two large long necked mythical animals on the Namer Pallet: "Their origin may lie in ancient Elam (Persia) or Mesopotamia, and they bear testimony to rich interconnections at the beginnings of the third millennium BC." Freed does not tell us what were these "rich interconnections" or where when or how these "rich interconnections" took place. Among the ancient Egyptians and precisely what ancient peoples and cultures in Elam and Mesopotamia did these "rich interconnections" take place? Sadly Freed offers not one shred of evidence. Here Freed makes the typical standard vague Western assertion that supports the standard Euro centric paradigm. If Freed were allowed to step out of her ideological prison she could see that the Namer pallet is a profoundly African object. For example on the Namer Pallet the pharaoh wears an ox-tail.(that was worn also by priest). Even today in parts of Nigeria religious officials still wear the ox-tail at ceremonial and religious functions. The pharaoh also wears a small bag of amulets across his chest. This is still worn by many traditional African rural village leaders even today. In parts of Senegal it is called a dakk. Behind the pharaoh stands, a priest, the so-called Sandal bearer who also is holding a kettle. Since the pharaoh has taken off his sandals we can assume that he is on holy ground after having been ceremoniously purified by the priest with holy w
I am the cataloger for the Wilbour Library of Egyptology at the Brooklyn Museum. Of the many discussions of the subject I have examined, this is the best for facts, as opposed to bromides and speculation, which often plague popular discussions of Egyptology.