University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology
3260 South Street
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104
Thursday, 2017-03-30, 18:00-19:00 EDT (Local Time)
Vanessa Davies, Visiting Research Scholar at the University of California, Berkeley, speaks at this Archaeological Institute of America Philadelphia Society lecture. Three prominent black writers of the early 20th century—W.E.B. Du Bois, Marcus Garvey, and Pauline Hopkins—incorporated ancient Egyptian culture into their writings. Attacking a common theory of their day, DuBois and Garvey used ancient Egyptian culture to argue for the humanity of black people, marshaling evidence of Egypt’s glorious past to inspire black people in the Americas with feelings of hope and self-worth. They also engaged with the contemporary work of prominent archaeologists, a fact lost in most histories of Egyptology. Hopkins’ novel Of One Blood places the reality of the racial discrimination and the racial “passing” of her day against the backdrop of ancient Egypt. Like Du Bois, she advocates for the education of black Americans, and like Garvey, she constructs an African safe haven for her novel’s protagonist. Understanding these three writers’ treatments of ancient Egypt, Davies argues, provides a richer perspective on the history of the discipline of Egyptology. Reception with opportunity to meet the speaker follows.
For more information, click here.Tags: Ancient Egypt, Archaeological Institute of America, Archaeological Institute of America Philadelphia Society, Egyptology, Marcus Garvey, Pauline Hopkins, Penn Museum, University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, Vanessa Davies, W. E. B. Du Bois