Wednesday, 6 May 2015

Guest Post: Abigail Taylor, current holder of the Maney Publishing and Durham University archaeology studentship

In this special guest post, Abigail Taylor discusses her work on the royal images of the 25th Dynasty Nubian rulers of Egypt 

"Hello everyone, my name is Abigail Taylor and I am a PhD student at Durham University, where I am being kindly supported in my study by Maney Publishing. My research investigates the use and abuse of images of the royal family in the 25th Dynasty and early Napatan period in Egypt and Nubia.

During the 8th Century BC Egypt came under the control of its southern neighbours from Nubia, a land seen traditionally as a rival and enemy, to be ruled by a line of kings as the 25th Dynasty for about a century. Following a number of brutal military campaigns backed by the Assyrian Empire, the Nubian kings were pushed out of Egypt and a new ruling house based in the Delta capital of Sais rose to power. In the following years many of the images and inscriptions of the 25th Dynasty Pharaohs were subjected to acts of iconoclasm and damnatio memoriae, with later parties defacing, attacking and mutilating representations of the Nubian kings.

Such actions were a common way to symbolically attack and seek to discredit a rival in Ancient Egypt, and were a political message to taint the memory of the old and highlight the power of the new regime. Iconoclasm is usually an action taken against religious icons, images and monuments that are motivated by political and religious change. Damnatio memoriae is also a destructive technique commonly used against statues, images and monuments to publicly attack images and send a powerful message about new political realities, to ritually punish, express power, and is always an expression of the current social and political feeling of the time.

In my project I am seeking to examine the large corpus of royal imagery for these Nubian kings, to identify the treatments they have been subjected to in later years, in order to ascertain the nature of the actions taken against them following their removal from rule. I hope that this work will enable me to draw conclusions that will further understanding of how the political, economic and social situations between these two respective territories could have influenced actions and attitudes towards royal imagery in general, and in particular towards these Nubian rulers who were of a foreign origin.

Echoes in modern history
Cases of image destruction are not only limited to antiquity. We are constantly surrounded by the physical evidence of the maiming of images, caught in the crossfire as they clash with different powers and ideologies, who use the destruction of an image to express ideological and political messages. In recent years we have seen various examples come to light across news channels the world over. An image I will never forget was when the troops toppled Saddam Hussein's statue during the 2003 invasion of Iraq, and most recently in 2015 we have also witnessed evidence for Assyrian statues being smashed at the Mosul Museum and the destruction of the ancient UNESCO World Heritage Sites of Khorsabad, Nimrud and Hatra by aggressors in the Middle East. Modern actions and events can be seen to have precedents and echoes throughout history, and this is something that in my opinion makes archaeology a discipline and subject that is so relevant and important in unraveling the history of human cultures."

Durham University is currently accepting applications for the 2015 scholarship, which includes full fees for three years and an annual £3,000 stipend. Ideal candidates will be undertaking doctoral studies in the archaeology of the Levant and Eastern Mediterranean. Interested applicants should apply no later than June 30th. 

For more information, please see our press release >

Monday, 13 April 2015

Free Access 14: Over 20,000 articles free to read

Now through April 26th, ALL online content, including 2015 issues for every single journal we publish in archaeology, conservation and heritage is 100 percent free to download. No sign ups, no registration, no strings attached: just free content from us to you. 

Free Access 14 (FA14) is our way of showing our appreciation for the amazing community of scholars and researchers who are dedicated to advancing knowledge in this exciting, ever-changing field. 

FA14 gives you access to research in 18 subject areas, including underwater archaeology, museum studies, field archaeology, conservation and more. The archives date back over 100 years to 1869. Click here to dig in and start enjoying your free content. 

Some of the most popular journals featured in this special promotion include: 

We're also excited to include some of our new titles for 2015: 

Tired of all the free content? We didn't think so. You can enter to win online subscriptions to all 43 of our journals for an entire year when you Tweet using the hashtag #idigthisjournalbecause and mention @ManeyArchaeo 

Just let us know what makes your favorite journal so special, and you could be rich in archaeological research! Three runners up will also win an online subscription for the journal of their choice for a full year.  

Thursday, 2 April 2015

If you're going to San Francisco, be sure to stop by the Society for American Archaeology 80th Annual Meeting

Thousands of archaeologists from diverse backgrounds will flock to San Francisco, California to share innovative ideas, hear about new research, and connect with colleagues at the Society for American Archaeology's 80th Annual Meeting, April 15-19. With a wide array of forums, symposiums and sessions in store, this year's meeting promises to be an event you won't want to miss.

The program offers an in-depth guide to the nearly 4,000 presentations taking place over the jam-packed four day event. There's even a mobile version for those who want to save extra room in their bags for some amazing journals that they just might find in the exhibit hall.

Here are just a few events that caught our eye in this veritable smorgasbord of sessions:
  • Wednesday, April 15th, 8-10am: Nose to Tail: An Interdisciplinary Look at Dogs in the Past
  • Wednesday, April 15th, 2-4pm: Excursion San Francisco Architectural Walking Tour
  • Thursday, April 16th, 1-3:30pm: Preservation, Protection, and Outreach Programs in National Park Service Archaeology
  • Friday, April 17th, 8-11am: Space and Time in the Upper Palaeolithic: A Mixed Traditions Approach to the Study of Prehistory
  • Friday, April 17th, 1-3:30pm: The Practices of Death: The Archaeology of Mortuary Ritual in Ancient Egypt and Sudan 
  • Saturday, April 18th, 1-4pm: Like Frejoles in a Pod: Examining the Current State of Paleoethnobotany in Peru
  • Sunday, April 19th, 8-11am:  Dietary Biographies: Chronicling Past Husbandry, Mobility, and Exchange Practices

The SAA was formed in 1934 in an effort to promote interest and research in American archaeology, advocate for conservation of archaeological resources, expand public access to archaeology and facilitate communication among archaeologists focusing on the Americas. Today, the organization has over 7,000 members including professionals, students, and researchers from the public and private sectors. 

If you're heading to the conference, be sure to stop by the Maney Publishing booth (#112) in the exhibition hall! We'd love to hear about your favorite sessions. 

To learn more about the 80th annual meeting, visit the SAA website.

Thursday, 19 March 2015

All the Viking ladies, put your hands up

Ring discovery connects Norse and Islamic cultures 

When you think about Scandinavian Vikings, what comes to mind? Bearded seafarers? Sure. Horned helmets? Absolutely. Islamic civilization? Not so much. 

But an enchanting ring found in a ninth century Viking grave offers evidence that these two seemingly disparate civilizations were actually in close contact

The breathtaking purple ring was first excavated in the late 1800s from Birka, a Viking trading center in Sweden, according to a recent Science News article. The ring's mesmerizing centerpiece was always thought to be a violet amethyst. But when archaeologists at Stockholm University conducted an electron microscope scan, they discovered that it is in fact made of colored glass, a highly desirable, and exotic material at the time. The scan also revealed an unexpected inscription on the glass inset which reads either "for Allah" or "to Allah" in ancient Arabic script. 

So how did this Islamic jewelry end up on the finger of a Viking a world away? Scandinavians were known to trade prized objects from Egypt and Mesopotamia as long as 3,400 years ago. So archaeologists theorize it's not unlikely that the Vikings could have obtained glass treasures from Islamic traders in the same part of the globe about 2,000 years later, rather waiting for these goods to travel north through popular trade networks. 

While there are encounters between these two civilizations mentioned in ancient texts about 1,000 years ago, substantial archaeological evidence in support of these accounts is quite rare. 

What's more, researchers at Stockholm University say the ring shows almost no signs of wear. This suggests it was made by an Arabic silversmith and had no prior owners before reaching the Viking woman. 

Into Vikings? Enjoy these complimentary articles from European Journal of Archaeology

‘A River of Knives and Swords’: Ritually Deposited Weapons in English Watercourses and Wetlands during the Viking Age

Bloody Slaughter: Ritual Decapitation and Display at the Viking Settlement of Hofstadir Iceland

Wednesday, 4 March 2015

European Journal of Archaeology seeks new Deputy Editor

European Journal of Archaeology is the international, peer-reviewed journal of the European Association of Archaeologists. This leading journal is dedicated to publishing the best new archaeological research taking place in Europe and surrounding regions. European Journal of Archaeology is currently accepting applications for a new Deputy Editor, who will work closely with the journal's Editor, Dr. Robin Skeates. Read on to learn more about this exciting opportunity. 

About the Position
The Deputy Editor is required to be deadline-driven with excellent communication skills, an ability to carry out editorial tasks based on prior editorial experience and a breadth of interests. The Deputy Editor will also be expected to work outside his/her own specialist fields of expertise. European Journal of Archaeology is a broad, well recognized and well cited publication, and the Deputy Editor will have an academic profile and level of seniority appropriate to the role.

Editor Responsibilities

  • Taking a portion of papers through the editorial peer-review process to a final recommendation 
  • Editing final papers to improve the clarity of arguments and quality of English
  • Checking and correcting proofs as required and returning them to the agreed Publisher’s schedule
  • Soliciting high-quality manuscripts for the journal
  • Acting as an ambassador for the journal at conferences and other events
  • Acting as Special Issue Editor on occasion
  • Deputizing for the Editor as necessary
  • Assisting the Editor to keep within the agreed annual page budget for the journal 

Applications must be submitted by April 30th, 2015 to Dr. Robin Skeates at Interested applicants should title their message "Deputy Editor Selection" and include a 1000-word statement describing their relevant experience and why they would like to become the Deputy Editor for European Journal of Archaeology.

Please view the complete job posting for more details.