Egypt and empire: religious identities from Roman to modern times

Egypt and empire: religious identities from Roman to modern times

Thursday 10 December & Friday 11 December 2015, 10.00-16.30 (Thu), 10.00-17.00 (Fri)
Stevenson Lecture Theatre
Colloquium: £30, Members/concessions £20
Joint ticket (Colloquium and Keynote lecture) £40, Members/concessions (colloquium and Keynote lecture) £30
Undergraduate and postgraduate students (UK Universities) £20 for joint ticket

Across Europe, North Africa and the Middle East, the first millennium AD witnessed the radical transformation of a world from devotion to many gods to the one God of Judaism, Christianity and Islam. This transition has shaped the modern world. Egypt’s arid climate has preserved an unparalleled range and abundance of material culture –documents on papyrus, textiles and other organic materials, in addition to literary manuscripts, sculpture, metalwork and ceramics – giving particular insights into the lived experience of faith. This breadth of evidence complicates and sometimes challenges the narratives of ancient, medieval and modern historians. After Egypt became a Roman province, most people continued to worship many gods. From the 4th century AD, when the imperial household adopted Christianity, the religion spread so that by the 5th century, most people in Egypt were Christian. Following the Arab conquest in AD 641, Islam was introduced and, by the 10th century Egypt had a majority Muslim population. Up until the mid-20th century minority Jewish communities had periodically thrived in Egypt. This two-day colloquium will bring together over 20 international scholars to discuss the ways in which empire has shaped, or been shaped by, religion in Egypt up to the 20th century. The papers will deploy evidence from the disciplines of History, Archaeology and Art History to explore the social, cultural and political dynamics of religious identities under empire.

The Keynote Lecture will be held in conjunction with the colloquium, in the Stevenson Lecture Theatre, on Thursday 10 December at 17:30
Egyptian religious identities under imperial rule: critical reflections

This can be booked as part of a joint ticket price from this page. To book only for the Keynote lecture a separate event page has been set up

A full programme and abstracts will be published here nearer the time. Please note: when booking a ticket for the Colloquium, only the date 10 December will show during the booking process but any ticket purchased is for both days. Concessions are British Museum Members, Egypt Exploration Society members, British Egyptian Society members, and Sudan Archaeological Research Society members. 


Keynote Lecture: Egyptian religious identities under imperial rule: critical reflections

Keynote Lecture: Egyptian religious identities under imperial rule: critical reflections

Thursday 10 December 2015, 17.30
Stevenson Lecture Theatre
Keynote lecture and reception only £20, Members/concessions £15 (Keynote lecture and reception only) £15

In the modern world, religious affiliation is usually seen as a stable and essential part of personal identity. The history of the ancient world is often written as if the same had been true in antiquity. But that is very doubtful – it is even contested if the ancients had a concept corresponding to our idea of ‘religion’. In this lecture, Roger Bagnall, Professor of Ancient History and Director of the Institute for the Study of the Ancient World at New York University, looks at the emergence of religious identity in Egypt from Hellenistic times to the Arab conquest and its relationship to imperial rule. Followed by a private viewing of the exhibition Egypt: faith after the pharaohs and a reception. The Keynote Lecture will be held in conjunction with the Colloquium: Egypt and empire: religious identities from Roman to modern times.

Keynote lecture and reception £20, concessions £15
Joint ticket (Keynote lecture and Colloquium) £40, concessions £30, undergraduate and postgraduate students (UK universities) £20
Concessions are British Museum Members, Egypt Exploration Society members, British Egyptian Society members, and Sudan Archaeological Research Society members.

Please note, to book a joint ticket for the Colloquium and Keynote lecture/reception together please visit the main Colloquium booking page where joint ticket prices are available.