James Fraser, British Museum
PEF FREE LECTURE SERIES
IN ASSOCIATION WITH THE BRITISH MUSEUM DEPARTMENT OF MIDDLE EAST
4pm, 6th April, 2017, BP Lecture Theatre, Clore Education Centre, British Museum. To book, contact the British Museum Box Office: 020 7323 8181 or www.britishmuseum.org and go to the 'What's On' option at the top of the BM homepage. Then choose the 'Events Calendar' and scroll down the page to see events listed by date and time.
A dolmen in the highlands of Transjordan. Photo, courtesy of James Fraser.
Megalithic dolmen tombs are some of the most striking features in the archaeological landscape of the southern Levant. Yet their visibility has made them an easy target for tomb robbers over the last 5000 years. Consequently, archaeologists have struggled to place these mysterious monuments into their true cultural contexts. This lecture presents the results of recent fieldwork investigating a dolmen cemetery in Jordan. This fieldwork underscores a new theory that proposes that highly-visible dolmen tombs helped reconfigure the ways in which people engaged with the landscape in the 4th millennium BC, a time when the region’s earliest civilisations developed a new urban way of life.
James Fraser completed his PhD at the University of Sydney in 2015, and is currently Project Curator for the Ancient Levant at the British Museum. James has undertaken fieldwork in Jordan, Syria, Afghanistan, Uzbekistan, Kashmir, Greece, Cambodia and the Solomon Islands. He directed the North Jordan Tomb Project as part of his PhD research, investigating dolmens and other megalithic structures in the east rift escarpment of the Jordan Valley in the Wadi ar-Rayyan. He is currently excavating as part of the British Museum’s expedition to Tello in Iraq.
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