December 30, 2020
The 2021 Annual Meeting is just one week away! Don’t miss workshops like Race and Archaeology: A Multipronged Approach. In this workshop, panelists will discuss how they use ancient source material to approach questions of race and variation.
Commonly asked questions of Egyptologists and Nubiologists center on the “race” of the people they study. However, the traditional anthropological “races” are not actually races, which refers to subspecies, they do not meet the criteria of evolutionary differentiation. Societally, “race” refers to groups that are constructed around physical traits and ancestry and these associations build a hierarchy that affects the lived realities of these people. The ancient Egyptions did not have an equivelant to the Western ideas of racial identity in their science or theory.
In this two-hour workshop, panelists will discuss how they use ancient source material to approach questions of “race” and variation. In this sense, we may adopt racialist methods of analysis, that is, using “race” in the modern sense to carry out research, although most biological anthropologists and geneticists reject the concept of doing racial analyses. A few key facts ground the discussion: (1) the ancient Nile River Valley cultures are indisputably African cultures with base populations that crystallized there; and (2) these ancient cultures did not have a conception of “race” or human variation that can be equated to modern Western conceptions.