Contested Heritage: Archaeology Museums in Turkey

  • 07 Feb 2013
  • 12:30 PM
  • Penn Museum, Philadelphia, PA
Abstract: Turkey will soon be home to a series of new, state-of-the-art, archaeology museums. Such buildings are being planned, constructed, remodeled, or expanded in Istanbul, Ankara, Gaziantep, and other places. What kind of cultural heritage will these new museums display? These secular temples of the Turkish Republic have generally emphasized the country's “10,000-year-old” past. In this historical narrative, different Turkish cities usually trace their roots back to the Neolithic. But, what other stories are left out of this narrative? How have these new museums attempted to display these silenced stories? In this talk I take Turkey as a specific case-study to argue that contested heritage seldom feels at home in archaeological museums.

Speaker Bio: Laurent is currently an Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow at the Penn Humanities Forum. He teaches a seminar entitled “Turkey Past & Present” in the Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations at Penn. Laurent received his PhD in 2011 in Near Eastern Studies from the University of California, Berkeley with a dissertation on the history of the Keban Dam Rescue Project in Eastern Turkey. He is currently writing a book manuscript entitled "Submerged Stories in Eastern Turkey," which deals with the Politics of Archaeology in Eastern Turkey.

For more information, email Sasha Renninger <sashafr@sas.upenn.edu>.

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