Browsing All Posts filed under »archaeology«

Cosmopolitan Women of the European Bronze Age

May 31, 2015


“Bronze Age Woman Had Surprisingly Modern Life” Ok, I think: what are we talking about here? what would be both modern and surprising? The subtitle of the article clarifies things: The stunningly well-preserved remains of the Egtved Girl from 3,500 years ago reveal her travels as a high-status woman of her day. Ahah! the “surprise” […]

Women as Leaders in Early Christianity: Fairy Tales?

November 21, 2013


When I find myself approving of the Daily Mail, I have to pause and ask what in the world is going on. But that is precisely where I find myself: feeling like the Daily Mail, for once, is not sensationalizing a story with its headlines on the reopening of Rome’s Catacombs of Priscilla: Do these […]

Bonampak Sex Change: From Heir to Heiress

October 28, 2013


An article in the Mexican newspaper La Cronica de Hoy reported last Thursday on a new book being presented in Mexico this week, The Spectacle of the Late Maya Court: Reflections on the Murals of Bonampak. Written by art historians Mary Ellen Miller and Claudia Brittenham, the book builds on a long-term project by Miller […]

Law of the Conservation of Gender

October 22, 2013


Think of it as like the law of the conservation of momentum: the gender in a system is constant if there is no external force acting on the system. Here’s how it works: burial discovered with two skeletons; spear near one interpreted as evidence for that body being male. Analysis of bones show that this […]

Ancient Women Are Confusing

September 16, 2013


At least, they are when they show up in positions of power. On Wednesday September 11, Fox News published a report, originally by the AFP, about the discovery of the tomb of Shangguan Wan’er, a Tang dynasty imperial bureaucrat in the Chinese court of Empress Wu Zetian. AFP is the credited source for Fox. But […]

Powerful Women Existed in Moche Society: Now Move On

August 9, 2013


How long does it take for us to not be surprised that powerful women exist? I wonder about that question a lot: every time the tomb or portrait of a woman of the noble class in Classic Maya society is found, we hear about how surprising it is that there were powerful women. Usually, this […]

Sacrificial Virgins: Sex, Violence, and Imagination

August 7, 2013


What is it with men who see sacrificed women and immediately begin to fantasize about their beauty and virginity? This was the story told about the Maya “Sacred Well”, the Cenote at Chichen Itza, as popularized by an interview Alma Reed conducted with Edward Thompson,  in 1923 in the New York Times, where Reed wrote […]


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,106 other followers