October 2014

Tutankhamun: The Truth Uncovered

I must confess when I read the blurb on the BBC for their new Tutankhamun programme, Tutankhamun: The Truth Uncovered, I was not entirely impressed. It talks about “new scientific research” and how “presenter Dallas Campbell […] carries out unique experiments to get to the truth.” and then proceeds to talk about stuff that sounds like a re-hash of the 2010 Hawass et al paper ( JAMA. 2010;303(7):638-647). So I was sceptical going in about the likelihood of it being anything new. Interestingly, Zahi Hawass is not mentioned once during the programme, but some of the other authors of that paper (Ashraf Selim and Albert Zink, if I remember correctly) are extensively interviewed. So my overall impression is that this is a second go at making a layperson-accessible documentary based on the 2010 paper, with the intention of distancing itself from Hawass who has now fallen from grace. The programme… Read More »Tutankhamun: The Truth Uncovered

“Beyond Indiana Jones: The Ark of the Covenant and Egyptian Ritual Processional Furniture” David Falk (EEG Meeting Talk)

On Sunday David Falk came to the Essex Egyptology Group to talk to us about his research on Egyptian Ritual Processional Furniture. He comes at the subject from a bit of a different angle from the speakers we generally hear – his central question is what can this Egyptian furniture tell us about the Ark of the Covenant, and the context in which the Pentateuch (the first 5 books of the Bible) was written. He started by explaining what he wasn’t going to be talking about – when discussing the Ark of the Covenant there is often what he called “an unhelpful dichotomy”. At one extreme there are those theologians who regard the Ark of the Covenant as purely mythological or allegorical, and don’t consider the idea of it being a real object at all. At the other extreme position is the Indiana Jones type of “discussion” about the Ark… Read More »“Beyond Indiana Jones: The Ark of the Covenant and Egyptian Ritual Processional Furniture” David Falk (EEG Meeting Talk)