MAES Lecture 12 November 2012 – ‘A Page from the Book of Genesis’: Changing visions of the Fayum Landscape

A lecture by Dr. Claire Malleson at Manchester Ancient Egypt Society

Monday 12th November, 7:30pm

Days Inn, Sackville Street, Manchester, M1 3AL

‘A Page from the Book of Genesis’: Changing visions of the Fayum Landscape

Representing different things to different people, the Fayum region can be viewed as the land of the Labyrinth and the Lake, a rich fertile oasis, the home of some of the most important Middle Kingdom remains, and a focus of interest regarding the changing environment in Egypt. This lecture will present some of the very different perceptions of the Fayum, from Ancient Egypt, classical Greece and Rome, Medieval Islamic scholars and early European travellers. It will examine who influenced who, and how literary trends and story-telling played a critical role in shaping our ideas as well as tracking some of the perceptions of the region which have remained the same throughout history.

Having studied Egyptology at Birkbeck College and Bloomsbury Summer Schools in London Claire started her MA (part time) in Liverpool in 2002, graduating in 2004, the topic of her thesis being Investigating Ancient Egyptian Towns: a Case Study of Itj-tawy. She began her PhD (part-time) at Liverpool in 2005 and started working on sites in Egypt, training as an archaeobotanist with Dr Murry at Giza (Mark Lehner’s site), going on to work as a botanist at other sites in Egypt. She completed her PhD in 2012, her thesis titled ‘Imagined and Experienced: Changing Perceptions of the Fayum Landscape.’ As well as Giza, she has worked at the archaeological sites of Tell el-Retaba, Medinet Gurob, Sais, Tell Mutubis, Tell el-Borg, Zawiyet Umm el-Rakham and, in the UK, Sedgeford in Norfolk and Chester Roman Amphitheatre.

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