Wednesday, 11 September 2013

The Return of Aesthetics to Archaeology

Ancient Egyptian funerary mask at the
Oriental Museum, Durham University
Why is ‘aesthetics’ a dirty word in archaeology? Can its archaeological study be reinvigorated, particularly with the help of philosophers and anthropologists?
Come and join the discussion at a workshop to be held at the University of London’s Senate House on Thursday 28th and Friday 29th November 2013.
The workshop is organised within the framework of an AHRC-funded Research Network Group project focused on ‘The Ethics and Aesthetics of Archaeology’. 
This wider project brings together philosophers, archaeologists and museum and heritage practitioners in order to focus on the relation between ethics and aesthetics, and explore how this relation shapes the understanding and practice of archaeological stewardship. The main premise underlying our multidisciplinary project is the idea that research into the ethics of stewardship (including moral obligations, duties and respect) will be enhanced significantly by an increased understanding of the role played by the aesthetic character of historical objects in influencing the moral relations we have with them and their makers.
The project is directed by two members of staff from Durham University: Dr Elisabeth Schellekens Dammann (Department of Philosophy) and Dr Robin Skeates (Department of Archaeology). They are assisted by Dr. Andreas Pantazatos (Co-Director of the Centre for the Ethics of Cultural Heritage).
The London workshop is generously sponsored by the University of London’s Institute of Philosophy. It is open to all, free of charge. Visit our project website for further details.
If you intend to attend, do please let us know, by sending an email to Dr Elisabeth Schellekens Dammann.

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