Exploring the Invisible in Ancient Egypt

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Exploring the Invisible in Ancient Egypt

Postby khentiamentiu » Fri Jan 11, 2019 5:53 pm

The American Research Center in Egypt, Northern California Chapter, and the Near Eastern Studies Department, University of California, Berkeley, invite you to attend a lecture by Dr. Kasia Szpakowska, Swansea University, Wales

Exploring the Invisible in Ancient Egypt

Sunday, January 20, 3 pm
B5 Hearst Annex (On south side of Barrows Hall)
UC Berkeley Campus

(Near the intersection
of Bancroft Way
and Barrow Lane)

Daemons2.001.jpg
Image courtesy of Dr. Kasia Szpakowska
Daemons2.001.jpg (94.62 KiB) Viewed 2349 times


About the Lecture:

In both the modern and ancient world, intangible entities embody and are blamed for a host of physical and psychological afflictions, as well as being called upon to aid the sufferer. These beings are known in many cultures by many names such as: gremlins, imps, faeries, ghosts, daemons, genies, Mischwesen, monsters, small gods, angels, and invisibilia. Although the Ancient Egyptians themselves had no specific all‐encompassing generic label for this category of beings, as individuals and groups they were described in texts and imagery. For the ordinary person, these beings played vital roles as mechanisms for coping with and manifesting abstract stress, afflictions, and fears.

They come in an incredible range of imaginative forms, made up of bits & pieces of animals & even objects, and appear on a range of sources. The focus of this presentation is on how these beings were manifested in images and the specific attributes (animal, facial, gesture) that the Ancient Egyptians chose to emphasize. My current research explores this in the broader context of cognition: the embodiment and expression of inexpressible concepts through these icons, memes and archetypes. The aim is to work out the motivation underlying the choice of particular attributes over others and seeing which emotive characteristics still resonate today.

Kasia hi-res photo.jpg
Dr. Kasia Szpakowska
Kasia hi-res photo.jpg (23.86 KiB) Viewed 2349 times


About the Speaker:

Dr. Kasia Szpakowska is Associate Professor of Egyptology at Swansea University, Wales. Her research focuses on Ancient Egyptian private religious practices, dreams, gender and the archaeology of magic. Currently she is investigating images of ancient Egyptian supernatural beings as mechanisms for coping with stresses, anxieties, trauma and health afflictions. Of particular interest is the motivation underlying the choice of specific attributes (animal, facial, gesture) and of archetypes. Discovering which emotive characteristics still resonate today furthers our understanding of our own modern responses, as well as those of the past.

She was elected to Phi Beta Kappa (1987), is a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries (London), Patron of the Friends of the Egypt Centre, and Vice President of the Friends of the Petrie Museum of Archaeology. Her publications include Daily Life in Ancient Egypt: Reconstructing Lahun and Behind Closed Eyes: Dreams and Nightmares in Ancient Egypt. TV work includes National Geographic’s The Egyptian Job and Discovery Kids’ Tutenstein.


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Parking is available in U.C. lots after 5 p.m. on weekdays and all day on weekends for a fee. Ticket dispensing machines accept either $5 bills or $1 bills, and debit or credit cards. The Underhill lot can be entered from Channing way off College Avenue. Parking is also available in lots along Bancroft, and on the circle drive in front of the Valley Life Sciences building.

A map of the campus is available online at http://www.berkeley.edu/map/
For more information about Egyptology events, go to http://www.facebook.com/NorthernCaliforniaARCE or https://www.arce-nc.org.
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