Center for Ancient Studies and Archaeology

Events and Calendars

Fall 2013 - Spring 2014

To see an archive of past events go here.

September 6, 2013
5 p.m.Breath of Heaven, Breath of Earth: Ancient Near Eastern Art from American Collections
Willamette University College of Law, Paulus Lecture Hall
Dr. Trudy Kawami
Director of Research
Arthur M. Sackler Foundation

Dr. Kawami is the co-curator with the Hallie Ford Museum of Art's Maribeth Collins Director, John Olbrantz, of Breath of Heaven, Breath of Earth: Ancient Near Eastern Art from American Collections.  Dr. Kawami will present an illustrated lecture on the divine, human, and animal realms in the art and architecture of the ancient Near East.

Sponsored by Hallie Ford Museum of Art

September 12, 2013
7:30 p.m.Return to Babylon: Travelers, Archaeologists, and Monuments in Mesopotamia
Mary Stuart Rogers Performing Arts Center, Hudson Concert Hall
Dr. Brian Fagan
Professor Emeritus
Department of Anthropology
University of California, Santa Barbara

Dr. Fagan, one of the foremost archaeologists in the United States and the author of over 60 books on the history and theory of archaeology, will present an illustrated lecture on the heroic era of Mesopotamian archaeology (when every excavator had to carry a gun), and the American discovery of the ancient Near East in the 19th and 20th centuries.

Sponsored by Hallie Ford Museum of Art

September 26, 2013
7:30 p.m.Gifts for the Gods: Sumerian Art from the Temple
Willamette University College of Law, Paulus Lecture Hall
Dr. Jean Evans
Research Associate
Oriental Institute
University of Chicago

Dr. Evans, author of The Lives of Sumerian Sculpture: An Archaeology of the Early Dynastic Temple, will present an illustrated lecture on Sumerian Mythology and religious beliefs as reflected in the votive sculptures, plaques, and other items found in Sumerian temples.

Sponsored by Hallie Ford Museum of Art

October 1, 2013
7:30 p.m.Death on the Nile
Hallie Ford Museum of Art, Roger Hull Lecture Hall

Film Screening

A wealthy British heiress is stalked by a former friend, whose boyfriend she had stolen before making him her new husband.  Hercule Poirot, on vacation in Egypt, investigates.  (color, 98 minutes)

October 10, 2013
7:30 p.m.King of the Four Quarters of the World: The Art and Architecture of Assyrian Kingship
Willamette University College of Law, Paulus Lecture Hall
Dr. Marian Feldman
Associate Professor of Art History and Near Eastern Studies
Johns Hopkins University
Dr. Feldman, author of Diplomacy by Design: Luxury Arts and an "International Style" in the Ancient Near East, 1400-1200 BCE, will present an illustrated lecture on the Assyrian concept of kingship as reflected in the complex visual narratives carved on palace walls.

Sponsored by Hallie Ford Museum of Art

October 12, 2013
Noon - 4 p.m.Family Activity Day
Hallie Ford Museum of Art, Maribeth Collins Lobby

Join education curator Elizabeth Garrison, Salem artists Sonia Allen and Helen Nute Wiens, and CASA coordinator April Miller as they guide parents and children through a variety of art-making and archaeological activities related to the exhibition.  Children will learn about cylinder seals, repousse and chasing, and a number of different archaeological practices and techniques.

Co-sponsored by Hallie Ford Museum of Art, the Center for Ancient Studies and Archaeology, the Marion Cultural Development Corporation and the Archaeological Institute of America.

October 13, 2013
10 a.m. - 2 p.m.National Archaeology Day Celebration
Fort Hoskins Historical Park, 3815 Hoskins Road, Philomath, OR

Extend your archaeological discoveries by participating in National Archaeology Day!  Every October the Archaeological Institute of America and archaeological organizations across the United States, Canada and abroad present archaeological programs and activities for people of all ages and interests.  Interactive, hands-on National Archaeology Day programs provide the chance to indulge your inner Indiana Jones!

Join us in excavating a Civil War era fort, learning about archaeological field and lab methods, touring the historic Franz-Dunn house and the original commander's house, and witnessing a civil war reenactment!  Then enjoy a free BBQ lunch!

Bus transportation with limited seating will be available from both, Willamette University in Salem and Oregon State University in Corvallis.  Reserve your seats NOW by clicking here!

For driving directions from Salem, click here.

For driving directions from Corvallis, click here.

Co-sponsored by the Center for Ancient Studies and Archaeology and the Salem Society of the Archaeological Institute of America.

October 15, 2013
7:30 p.m.Murder in Mesopotamia
Hallie Ford Museum of Art, Roger Hull Lecture Hall
Film Screening

While Hercule Poirot is on holiday in Iraq, the wife of the head scientist at an archaeological dig confides to him that she is the target of threatening letters (color, 100 minutes).

October 24, 2013
7:30 p.m.Syria and the Levant: Life in the Lands of the Hebrew Bible
Willamette University College of Law, Paulus Lecture Hall
Dr. Ronald Wallenfels
Adjunct Associate Professor of Hebrew and Judaic Studies
New York University

Dr. Ronald Wallenfels, a consultant in the Department of Ancient Near Eastern Art at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, will present an illustrated lecture on daily life in the ancient Syria and the Levant from the fourth to the first millennium BCE.

Sponsored by Hallie Ford Museum of Art

October 29, 2013
7:30 p.m.Appointment with Death
Hallie Ford Museum of Art, Roger Hull Lecture Hall

Film Screening

While accompanying her husband on an archaeological dig in Syria in 1937, overbearing, abusive Lady Boynton is found stabbed to death. Hercule Poirot investigates (color, 80 minutes).

November 7, 2013
7:30 p.m.Lions, Bulls, Snakes, and Scorpions: Animals in Ancient Iranian Art and Thought
Willamette University College of Law, Paulus Lecture Hall
Dr. Holly Pittman
Professor of Art History
University of Pennsylvania

Dr. Holly Pittman, curator in the Ancient Near Eastern section at the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, and co-curator of the 1998 exhibition Treasures from the Royal Tombs of Ur, will present an illustrated lecture on animals in ancient Iranian art, culture, and thought.

Sponsored by Hallie Ford Museum of Art

November 12, 2013
7:30 p.m.Murder on the Orient Express
Hallie Ford Museum of Art, Roger Hull Lecture Hall

Film Screening

Hercule Poirot investigates the murder of a shady American businessman stabbed in his compartment on the famous Orient Express en route from Istanbul to Paris (color, 89 minutes).

January 16, 2014
7:30 p.m.Kinet Hoyuk (Turkey) and the Archaeology of Eastern Mediterranean Seaports (Martha Sharp Joukowsky Lecture)
Willamette University College of Law, Paulus Lecture Hall
Dr. Marie-Henriette Gates
Professor of Archaeology
Bilkent University

The twenty-year project (1992-2011) at Kinet Hoyuk , an ancient seaport near Iskenderun/Turkey, offers a long perspective on maritime life in the northeaternmost corner of the Mediterranean.  Kinet can be identified with classical Issos, overlooking the plain where Alexander the Great defeated the Persians in 333 BCE; and earlier, with a Hittite harbor named Izziya (ca. 1500-1200 BCE).  The site's archaeological span is much longer, however, excavations show that from prehistoric times to the Crusades, Kinet flourished within an economic network extending at least as far as Cyprus, and occasionally throughout the eastern Mediterranean.

The Kinet excavations also concluded that archaeological expectations for land-based settlements differ from maritime sites in fundamental ways.  The norms for ancient Near Eastern sites would predict that Kinet's remote location and small size entailed a modest, self-contained existence.  This port instead enjoyed enduring prosperity based on well-connected enterprise.  My lecture will present an overview of the project's findings, and propose parameters for the archaeology of seaports, using Kinet Hoyuk as guide.

Short bibliography/website on lecture topic (for lay reader):  http://www.bilkent.edu.tr/~arkeo/kineteng.html

Co-sponsored by the Salem Society of the Archaeological Institute of America and the Willamette University Center for Ancient Studies and Archaeology

1000 years of Kinet shipping containers

January 30, 2014
7:30 p.m.Student Research Presentations
Willamette University College of Law, Paulus Lecture Hall

Dylan Angell, Jessica "Jo" Heupel, Maureen Ricks
Students of Archaeology
Willamette University

Ground Penetrating Radar Survey of Fort YamhillGrid 1

During the months of July and August 2013, Dylan Angell conducted ground penetrating radar surveys at the Fort Yamhill archaeological site northeast of Grand Ronde, Oregon. The survey was conducted in two stages, the first (Grid I) focusing on the area recognized to be the officers’ houses and the second (Grid II) on the field behind the bake house in the area thought to contain the fort’s privies. Primary goals were to locate candidates for the foundations of Officer House 2 and the privies in an effort to inform future excavations of the site. Anomalies were detected in both survey regions providing potential candidates for features of interest, though not of the originally intended targets. Grid I revealed anomalies strongly resembling the foundations of Officer House 3 but failed to provide any candidates for Officer House 2, which was later uncovered within the area of the scan during field excavations. Two distinct anomalies were present in Grid II. The first is likely the foundations of the fort’s laundress’ quarters and the second may be a shallow pit excavated during the time of occupation. The location of the fort privies was not discovered and is now believed to be outside of the scanned area, given the relation between these structures and the laundress’ quarters on period maps.

Heraclea SinticaStudying Abroad: Archaeological Experience at Field Schools in Scotland and Bulgaria

Jo Heupel will be discussing her experiences at two field schools she attended. These field schools are a great way for students to gain experience learning the fundamentals of field archaeology. The Ness of Brodgar in Orkney, Scotland, was the site of a major Neolithic sanctuary. The Bulgarian site, Heraclea Sintica, was a major Roman city founded in the Hellenistic era and inhabited through the 5th century CE. Both of these sites offer great opportunities to experience two different locations and time periods through archaeology.

Material Analysis of the Wilson-Durbin Collection

Maureen Ricks is presenting her senior thesis research on the Wilson-Durbin Collection. The collection was excavated from the Wilson-Durbin house, a historical Salem house built in 1861 by Joseph Gardner Wilson. The house was sold to the Durbins and passed down through the family for the next fifty years. The artifacts now belong to the Willamette Heritage Center at the Mission Mill Museum. Her research shows what the "junk" from behind their house reveals about the Wilson and Durbin families and life in Salem in these times.

Cathedral Bottle

February 13, 2014
7:30 p.m.Archaeology and Science at the Paisley Caves
Willamette University College of Law, Paulus Lecture Hall
Dr. Dennis Jenkins
Director, Northern Great Basin Prehistory Project
Senior Research AssociateDennis Jenkins
Museum of Natural and Cultural History
University of Oregon

Luther Cressman's 1938-1940 excavations at the Paisley Caves in south central Oregon discovered exciting evidence suggesting that people may have lived there as early as the Late Pleistocene, some 12,000 to 15,000 years ago.  However, it was not until recent developments in and results of archaeological and paleogenetic investigations at the Paisley Caves, bringing the audience the most up-to-date information about the evidence for the association of humans and Pleistocene animals in Oregon's high desert country more than 14,000 years ago.  Dating of camel and horse bones, artifacts, twigs, and dried human feces containing Native American DNA between 12,900 and 14,500 years ago indicates that people lived in the caves and may have hunted camels, horses, and other animals at the end of the Pleistocene.  This colorful slide show takes the audience through the scientific processes employed in proving the case for pre-Clovis human occupations at the world famous Paisley Caves.Paisley Caves Artifact

Co-sponsored by the Salem Society of the Archaeological Institute of America and Willamette University's Center for Ancient Studies and Archaeology.
This event is made possible in part by a Society Outreach Grant from the Archaeological Institute of America.
February 27, 2014
7:30 p.m.The Rise and Fall of the Bible: Evangelical Capitalism, the Digital Revolution, and the Twilight of the Good Book
Hudson Hall, Mary Stuart Rogers Music Center
Dr. Timothy Beal
The Florence Harkness Professor of Religion
Case Western Reserve University
Journey back to early Christianity to explore how a bunch of handwritten scrolls became the Bible, and forward to see how the multibillion-dollar Bible business is selling down its sacred capital. Today, in the twilight of print book culture and the dawn of the digital era, the Bible is undergoing another revolution -- one that will be as big as Gutenberg. It's the “end of ‘the Word’ as we know it.” Instead of attempting to protect and preserve our iconic "Good Book," Beal sees this crisis as an opportunity to rediscover “the Bible after the Bible,” not as a rock but a river, and not as a book of answers but a library of questions.

Lane C. McGaughy Lectureship in Ancient Studies

March 11, 2014
7:30 p.m.Sacred Spaces and Human Sacrifice: The Nasca Lines in their Cultural and Religious Context
Willamette University College of Law, Paulus Lecture Hall
Dr. Christina ConleeChristina Conlee
Professor of Anthropology
Texas State University
Dr. Christina Conlee will present a lecture on the Nasca Lines of southern Peru, which have long been an enigma for archaeologists and lay people alike. Many theories have been proposed about what they were used for and why they were constructed. In the last 20 years archaeologists have learned much more about the ancient Nasca people and we are now able to understand the lines as an important part of their religion. These were sacred places where ceremonies were performed and offerings were made to ensure fertility and the continuation of society.Hummingbird

Headless Burial

Co-sponsored by the Salem Society of the Archaeological Institute of America, Willamette University's Center for Ancient Studies and Archaeology, and the Latin American Studies Program

April 9, 2014
7:30 p.m.Genetics and African Prehistory: Possibilities and Challenges
Willamette University College of Law, Paulus Lecture Hall
Dr. Scott MacEachernMacEachern
Professor of Anthropology
Bowdoin College

Less archaeology has been done in Africa than on any other continent, and the prehistory of much of this vast continent remains more or less unknown. Historical genetics provides us with a new and extremely powerful way of looking at population movements and contacts in the past, and the comparison of archaeological and genetic data offers the prospects of immense improvement in our understanding of African prehistory. At the same time, there are dangers involved in such interdisciplinary undertakings: archaeological and genetic data offer insights into different aspects of human history, and each approach has its own strengths and weaknesses. In particular, genetics can reinforce assumptions that African populations are ‘people without history’, remnants of humanity’s past. This lecture will offer a discussion of these issues, with examples drawn from the Lake Chad Basin and other parts of the continent.

Co-sponsored by the Salem Society of the Archaeological Institute of America and Willamette University's Center for Ancient Studies and Archaeology

April 19, 2014
9th Annual Northwest Undergraduate Conference on the Ancient World
Ford Hall, Kramer Board Room (Rm 102)

ABSTRACT deadline has been EXTENDED to Friday, April 4, 2014.  Please deliver abstracts to the conference organizer Prof. Mary R. Bachvarova at mbachvar@willamette.edu.  Conference acceptances will be emailed within a few days after the deadline.

The Classical Studies Program at Willamette University in Salem, Oregon, is hosting a one-day undergraduate conference.  We envision this conference as an opportunity for talented undergraduates to present their work, for example a BA thesis or outstanding seminar paper, in a 20-minute talk to an audience of undergraduates and their faculty mentors.  Papers are welcome in any area of ancient studies, including language and literature, religion, history, philosophy, and material culture.

A catered buffet breakfast and lunch will be provided to al participants, and audio-visual facilities will be available.  Interested students should submit an abstract electronically by April 4, 2014 to mbachvar@willamette.edu, that provides the following information: name, email address, name and email of the supporting faculty member, any audio-visual needs (PowerPoint, video, slide projector), title of the talk, and 300-word description of the talk.

Further information will be posted on the website of the Willamette University Classical Studies Program or you may contact the conference organizer, Prof. Mary R. Bachvarova.

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