Monday, July 18, 2011

Zahi Hawass fired

So I read today that celebrity archaeologist Zahi Hawass has lost his job as Minister of Antiquities in Egypt.  I have mixed feelings about the guy, so in a way I am glad to see him go, but at the same time, it's almost sad to see such an iconic figure of Egyptian archaeology losing his job.  On the one hand, I think he was very passionate about Egypt and history.  But I also think he was very strict in his interpretation of Egyptology and pretty closed minded.

The article linked above notes that archaeologist Nora Shalaby said that Hawass didn't tolerate criticism and that most of his finds were about self promotion.  That sounds about right to me.  Especially after seeing his show Chasing Mummies on the History channel.  I was wondering recently if the show would be returning for another season.  In light of the revolution and Hawass losing his job, I'm guessing it probably won't.

Oh well, I'm curious what direction Egyptology will go in without him leading it.  Will it follow the same direction, or will new ideas be tolerated and considered?  I guess we'll just have to wait and see!

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