Category Archives: Archaeology

وقفة مع: محمد مرقطن

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تقف هذه الزاوية مع مبدع عربي في أسئلة سريعة حول انشغالاته الإبداعية وجديد إنتاجه. “يشغلني الوعي التاريخي العربي، وتشغلني مسألة الهوية التاريخية العربية وإمكانية رفع مستوى مساهمة العرب في كتابة تاريخهم ولغات بلادهم القديمة”، يقول المؤرخ الفلسطيني لـ”العربي الجديد”.

https://www.alaraby.co.uk/culturalstops/2020/5/2/وقفة-مع-محمد-مرقطن?fbclid=IwAR3x_2rx9XILPAw8dwZLoumJfE8Glz5Rk0PMyIkZyGpxeWJpvXqb8uPXy5g

Cairo Heritage Workshop

Cairo2Workshop participants. Dan Mahoney is in the back, 5 from the left. Photo courtesy of Peter Heredrich.

On behalf of AIYS, board member Daniel Mahoney attended a “Strategic Planning for Regional Cultural Property Protection” workshop organized in Cairo on February 22-23, 2020. This was organized by the American Research Center in Egypt (ARCE) for the CAORC member centers and allied organizations in regard to two main topics: (1) an update and explanation of the bilateral agreements the U.S. is making with countries in MENA with the most immediate aim of stopping the importation of looted/stolen archaeological and ethnographic cultural property, and (2) the planning for two future workshops (sponsored by ARCE from a grant from the U.S. Embassy in Cairo) aimed at bringing together CAORC members and government officials from the MENA countries to discuss topics such as site management and collection documentation and inventory systems.

The major outcome of the meeting was the planning of the next two workshops. The first will take place at ACOR (Jordan) when possible, with its theme of ‘site management’.
It is hoped that these workshops will further communications between MENA government antiquities professionals in order to share and promote best practices for cultural heritage/property protection.

In regards specifically to Yemen and the ‘MoU’ (Memorandum of Understanding) for the bilateral agreement for cultural property protection, this is the current status: On February 7, a unilateral emergency order was issued by the U.S. via the Federal Register for import restrictions imposed on archaeological and ethnological material from Yemen. This can remain in place for up to eight years, but cannot be renewed beyond this. During this period of time, a bilateral agreement must be settled, which will last for five years and can be renegotiated and renewed every five years thereafter. There was a hearing and meeting for this bilateral MoU in Washington, D.C. this past October, but the final results have yet to come about. It is expected later this year. The MoU is necessary because the 1970 UNESCO Convention for Cultural Property Protection is not automatically enforced in the U.S. without an additional agreement.

The reason for the recent upsurge in agreements for the MENA region is partly because the U.S. government sees them as a tool towards national security because the illegal trafficking of cultural property is often used to fund terrorism. In addition, increased regional/local MENA interest in the protection of cultural property leads to the strengthening of civil society and local communities.

New Post on Zabid Project

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One of the major archeological projects conducted in Yemen was the Royal Ontario Museum expedition in the 1980s under the directorship of Ed Keall.  Dr. Keall has provided an update on the project and this is now online on the AIYS website.

Below is the outline:

Formal Start of the Project in 1982 >
Study of Zabid’s urban form >
Traditional brick houses of Zabid >
Zabid Citadel Excavations >
al-Asha’ir mosque probe
>
Ceramic Typology >
The Mosques of Zabid >
Commemorative Monuments in Islamic Tihamah >
Spate Irrigation and Water Delivery Systems >
Megalithic site of al-Midamman >
Rock paintings of al-Mastur >
Bibliography

الإعلان عن إطلاق موقع يمن ابديت اون لين

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الإعلان عن إطلاق موقع  يمن ابديت اون لين

ينشر موقع يمن ابديت اون لاين البحوث والدراسات اليمنية بما في ذلك المقالات المهنية بلغتين العربية والانجليزي و مراجعات الكتب والتقارير التي يصدرها باحثو وزملاء المعهد الأمريكي للدراسات اليمنية. تتم الإضافات والتحديثات على مدار العام بعد تقديمها والموافقة على نشرها من قبل المحررين. وان كانت المقالات اقل من الف كلمة فسيتم نشرها كنص في الإنترنت. بينما يتم نشر المقالات والموضوعات الأطول بصيغة بي. دي. أف لأمكانية نسخها من الموقع. ويتخذ المحررون قرار الموافقة على نشرها. ان رغبتم في تقديم صور او رسومات يجب ان تكونوا اصحاب الحق في نشرها اولديكم اذناً بذل. أما بقية حقوق الطبع فهي للكاتب. التفاصيل على الموقع

Announcing Yemen Update Online

Yemen Update Online publishes research in English and Arabic in any field of Yemen Studies. This includes professional articles of any length, book reviews and AIYS fellowship reports. Items will be added throughout the calendar year as they are submitted and approved by the editors. If the article is less than 1,000 words it will be published as text online, but longer articles will be published as pdfs to be downloaded from the site. Decisions on publication are made by the editors. If you are submitting photographs or drawings, make sure that you have permission to do so.  All rights remain with the author. For details, check out the website.

Why Yemen Matters

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The forum “Why Yemen Matters: The Heritage of a Land in Crisis” was held at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton on February 19, 2020, sponsored by the Near Eastern Studies program under the leadership of Dr. Sabine Schmidtke. Speaking at the event were AIYS members Najwa Adra, Nathalie Peutz and Dan Varisco. Present in the audience was AIYS board member Tarek Al-Wazir.

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(left to right): Dan Varisco, Nathalie Peutz, Hassan Ansari, Najwa Adra, Glen Bowersock, Sabine Schmidtke, Christian Robin

Yemen’s war and humanitarian crisis are in the news, but very little is known about the rich cultural heritage of the southwestern corner of Arabia throughout history. Also largely unknown are Yemen’s geographic and economic diversity or their impact on recent events. Yemen’s diversity owes much to conquest, trade, and migration between Yemen and Christian Ethiopia, Sassanian and Islamic Iran, Fatimid and Ayyubid Egypt, Ottoman Turkey, the African coast and Southeast Asia. In this panel experts on different periods of Yemeni history and its diverse contemporary contexts probe beyond current politics to share their insights and discuss potentials for future scholarly research on Yemen.

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Dan Varisco speaking on the historical diversity of Islam in Yemen.

Why Yemen Matters

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Yemen’s war and humanitarian crisis are in the news, but very little is known about the rich cultural heritage of the southwestern corner of Arabia throughout history. Also largely unknown are Yemen’s geographic and economic diversity or their impact on recent events. Yemen’s diversity owes much to conquest, trade, and migration between Yemen and Christian Ethiopia, Sassanian and Islamic Iran, Fatimid and Ayyubid Egypt, Ottoman Turkey, the African coast and Southeast Asia. In this panel experts on different periods of Yemeni history and its diverse contemporary contexts probe beyond current politics to share their insights and discuss potentials for future scholarly research on Yemen.

There will be a Near Eastern Studies Seminar, Why Yemen Matters: The Heritage of a Land in Crisis,at the School of Historical Studies, Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton on Feb. 19, from 5:00-6:30 pm. This Panel Discussion presents current IAS Scholars:  Najwa Adra (IAS), Hassan Ansari (IAS), Glen Bowersock (IAS), Nathalie Peutz (New York University Abu Dhabi), Christian Robin (Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, Paris), Sabine Schmidtke (IAS), and Daniel M. Varisco (American Institute for Yemeni Studies).

The meeting will be held in the White-Levy room at IAS. This event is part of the Near Eastern Studies Workshops sponsored by Professor Sabine Schmidtke (IAS). RSVP to nitschke@ias.edu.

Epigraphy of pre-Islamic South Arabia

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A series of five hands-on lectures will be given by Christian Robin, a Member of the School for Historical Studies at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton and of the Centre Nationale de la Recherche Scientifique in France, in the Near Eastern Studies Workshops sponsored by Professor Sabine Schmidtke. These will provide an overview of the epigraphic documentation of pre-Islamic Arabia and existing tools, as well as presenting the state of the art on issues for which significant progress has been made in recent years through new epigraphic discoveries and the re-examination of older documents.

This will be held over five days: January 21, 23, 27, 28, 30, 2020 in Fuld Hall, room 307 of IAS.

The topics include:
• Arabs and Ḥimyarites; sha‘b and ‘ashīrat; the introduction of the horse
• territorial expansion of the kingdom of Ḥimyar; the “kingdom” of Kinda
• Judaism of Ḥimyar; the names of God, especially Raḥmānān
• reign of Abraha; the Christianity of Ḥimyar; Christian Arabs
• polytheistic god al-Lāh (comparison with al-Lāt); daughters of Īl
• tribal map and Arab-Islamic genealogies; permanence and breaks
• Arab-Muslim scholarly tradition and archaeology (writing, ritual practices, political history, chronology)
• Arabic and South Arabian languages
• long distance trade
• public finances

Knowledge of a Semitic language, ideally Arabic, is recommended.

RSVP to nitschke@ias.edu

Passing of Merilyn Phillips Hodgson

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Merilyn Phillips Hodgson
(photograph from AFSM website)

Dear friends,
It is with great sorrow that we share the news of the passing of Merilyn Phillips Hodgson on Sunday, December 29, 2019 at her home in Falls Church, Virginia.
Merilyn’s passion for Yemen and its people began after taking over the leadership of the American Foundation for the Study of Man following the death of her brother, Wendell Phillips.
Through her commitment to the archaeology and cultural heritage of Yemen, she introduced great opportunities for scholars to participate and work in one of the most famous archaeological sites in Yemen at Awam Temple/ Mahram Bilqis.  We at the American Foundation for the Study of Man will honor her legacy and continue exploring, working and supporting Yemen and its culture.
Those of us that have had the privilege of enjoying her company will miss her greatly.  May she rest in peace and may your memories of spending time with her bring a smile.

On behalf of the American Foundation of the Study of Man,
Zaydoon Zaid
________________________________
Dr.-Ing. Zaydoon Zaid
Director and Vice-president
American Foundation For the Study of Man
Falls Church, VA 22042
703 241 3780
703 303 9640 (cell)

Recontres Sabéenes Conference

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Arabic in Didanite script – 5th century BCE:
(northern Ḥijāz) (from Ahmad al-Jallad)

The 24th Rencontres Sabéennes conference organized by the American Foundation for the Study of Man (AFSM) will take place in Amman, Jordan, from the 16th to the 18th of June, 2020.

The conference will be hosted in cooperation with Smithsonian Institution, Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, the American Centre of Oriental Research (ACOR) and the School of Archaeology and Tourism/University of Jordan.

The topic of the meeting will be: “Crossing Boundaries: Contacts between South and North Arabia”

If you wish to offer a paper, please send an abstract to  zaydoon@afsm.org   on or before the 28th  of February, 2020 for consideration by the Committee.

All abstracts must also include the title of the proposed paper; name(s) and affiliation(s) of the contributor(s) and five key words. Abstracts are limited to 200 words maximum. Please submit your abstracts as Word documents only.

There is no registration fee, A travel and hotel expenses are the responsibility of the participants.