archaeology

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By Dr Gemma Watson, Post-Doctoral Research Assistant in the Department of Archaeology

Back in May 2017, Roberta Gilchrist, Professor of Archaeology and Research Dean at the University of Reading, presented the prestigious Rhind Lectures, the oldest and biggest archaeology lecture series in the world, hosted by the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland.

Professor Gilchrist presented on the theme of ‘Sacred Heritage: Archaeology, Identity and Medieval Beliefs’, exploring over six lectures the value of sacred medieval heritage today and in the past. The lectures outline a new research agenda for the archaeological study of later medieval monasticism with a strong emphasis on the archaeology of medieval Scotland and tying in with the Scottish Government’s Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology 2017. The lectures are now available to watch online.

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Avril Maddrell

Avril Maddrell

Dr Avril Maddrell (SAGES) is running an AHRC-ESRC project on Deathscapes and Diversity. Against the backdrop of increasing ethnic and religious diversity in the UK, many challenges have been raised practically and politically about living together in difference within in Britain. While attention has focused upon Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) patterns of housing, education, employment and leisure, what is less well understood is migrant and established minority needs relating to cemetery, crematoria and sites of ritual and remembrance (‘deathscapes’).

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Spreading good taste: Winckelmann and the objects of dissemination

University of Reading, 15 September 2017, 10:00 am – 6:45 pm

Registration is now open for ‘Spreading good taste: Winckelmann and the objects of dissemination’, a one-day academic conference to be held at the University of Reading on 15 September.

This is the second of three workshops on the general theme Under the Greek Sky: Taste & the reception of Classical art from Winckelmann to the present, to be held in England in 2017-2018, as part of a series of international events marking the tercentenary of Winckelmann’s birth (2017) and 250 years since his death (2018). Winckelmann, who is traditionally regarded as the ‘father’ of both classical archaeology and art history, is generally acknowledged as having brought about a revolution in scholarly approaches to ancient Greek and Roman culture, influenced practices of archaeological excavation and museum display, provided a key impetus to the spread of Neoclassical taste in art, architecture and decoration throughout Enlightenment Europe.  Following on from a two-day workshop in London (KCL/Warburg Institute) held in June 2017, which explored ‘imitation’ and climate theory as two key components of Winckelmann’s historiography and aesthetics, the Reading workshop will consider the portable artefacts of antiquity—coins, gems and vases— through which Winckelmann and others familiarised themselves with the ancient world, considering their use and adaptation in scholarly, connoisseurial, and both private and public display contexts.  We will also consider the dissemination of ancient styles and designs through large-scale and miniaturised casts.

For the full workshop programme see https://www.reading.ac.uk/Ure/info/Winckelmann.php.

The workshop will take place at the Museum of English Rural Life (www.reading.ac.uk/TheMERL), on the University of Reading’s London Road campus. Lunch will be provided, and the workshop will be followed from 5:00 – 7:00 pm by a drinks reception to launch the exhibition Winckelmann and the spread of neoclassical taste in the University of Reading’s Special Collections, adjacent to the Museum.  This exhibition is a collaboration between the Ure Museum of Greek Archaeology and University of Reading Special Collections, and is funded with the generous support of the University of Reading Arts Committee and the Vice-Chancellor’s Endowment Fund.

REGISTRATION DETAILS: 

The workshop is free of charge but places are limited, so pre-registration is required. Please register before 1 September on the following link:

http://www.store.reading.ac.uk/conferences-and-events/faculty-of-arts-humanities-social-science/dept-of-classics/spreading-good-taste-winckelmann-and-the-objects-of-dissemination

For immediate enquiries, please contact the Ure Museum Assistant Curator, Ms Jayne Holly-Wait.  Email: ure@reading.ac.uk, telephone no. 0118 378 6990. For the full programme of international events, see http://www.winckelmann-gesellschaft.com/en/winckelmann_anniversaries_20172018/.

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Professor Roberta Gilchrist, Professor of Archaeology and Research Dean at the University of Reading, will present the prestigious Rhind Lectures 2017, at the National Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh, from 19-21 May. The Rhinds are the biggest archaeology lecture series in the world, comprising six lectures given over one weekend.

Professor Roberta Gilchrist at Glastonbury Abbey, the subject of one of her Rhind Lectures

The free annual lectures have been hosted by the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland since 1874 to commemorate Alexander Henry Rhind, whose money bequeathed to the society first allowed them to take place, making the Rhinds the oldest and most renowned series of archaeology lectures internationally.

Professor Gilchrist has chosen the theme ‘Sacred Heritage: Archaeology, Identity and Medieval Beliefs’.  The six lectures will explore the value of sacred heritage today and in the past, examining the political and ideological use of monastic archaeology from the 12th century to the modern day.

The lectures outline a new research agenda for the archaeological study of medieval monasticism, focusing on critical approaches to heritage, the study of identity, healing, magic and memory.  They feature a strong emphasis on the archaeology of medieval Scotland, to coincide with the Scottish Government’s Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology 2017.

In the past year, Professor Gilchrist has also given prestigious named lectures in Sweden, Canada and the USA and was Current Archaeology’s Archaeologist of the Year 2016, based on a vote by members of the public.

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Society for the Promotion of Byzantine Studies

SPBS & The Friends of the British School at Athens present an illustrated lecture by

Dr Ken Dark, University of Reading

Building Orthodoxy: Recent Archaeological Work at Haghia Sophia

6.00 pm Tuesday 21 March 2017, followed by an informal Reception at Room G22/26, Ground Floor, South Block, Senate House, Malet Street, London WC1E 7HU

The nearest tube station is Russell Square.

Free entry for SPBS members but please confirm attendance to Liz Mincin: emincin@googlemail.com

 

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Two Reading archaeologists have edited a new book compiling dozens of influential research papers on European medieval archaeology.

Medieval Archaeology, edited by Professor Roberta Gilchrist (Research Dean for Heritage & Creativity) and Dr Gemma Watson from the Department of Archaeology, is a new publication in Routledge’s Critical Concepts in Archaeology series.

The four-volume, 1,930-page publication reprints 77 influential papers carefully selected to highlight the key issues and debates in the development and contemporary practice of later medieval archaeology in Europe (c. 1000–1550 AD).

The four volumes are designed thematically: ‘Defining Medieval Archaeology’, ‘the Medieval Landscape’, ‘Medieval Life’ and ‘Medieval Social Archaeology’.

The publication includes papers by Reading archaeologists Roberta Gilchrist, Grenville Astill, Mary Lewis, Gundula Mueldner and Aleks Pluskowski.

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Researchers at the University of Reading secured more than £3.9 million in research awards in December.

A total of 21 research projects were given the go-ahead in the last month of 2016, with funders from a variety of sources including government, research councils, charities and business.

Steve Mithen, Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Pro-Vice-Chancellor for research, said: “Congratulations to everyone whose research grants were confirmed during December. I am particularly pleased that Reading has continued to collaborate with a wide range of funders, including the European Horizon 2020 programme.

“I have no doubt that these awards represent an excellent investment in knowledge and will reap great rewards for society in the near future.”

Among those winning funding in December were…

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