MUSE 370: That Belongs in a Museum!

Cross Listed
Credits 3

In an iconic scene in Indiana Jones: Last Crusade, Indiana Jones mutters the famous phrase, “That belongs in a museum!” when a relic is forcibly taken from him. Though the scene is Hollywood fiction, it does serve to highlight real tensions that exist in our culture surrounding antiquities. Simultaneously viewed as objects of material, cultural and aesthetic value, ancient objects occupy a nebulous space in the collective imagination. This course is designed to introduce students to the types of artifacts that survive from antiquity and to explore some of the special challenges associated with antiquities collections. Students will become familiar with the most common materials and methods used in antiquity to create artifacts, develop an understanding of the archaeological processes of deposition, excavation and on-site processing of objects, and study a range of issues associated with the conservation, storage, display and publication of ancient artifacts by museums and universities.