FALL 2014

The Future of the Past: Archaeology today
October 23 – November 28, 2014

When it comes to archaeology, everything old is new again. Today’s archaeologists are unearthing fresh insights about our distant and more recent past.

They’re collaborating with anthropologists and scientists, and applying precision tools like lasers and drones  to challenge theories about how societies functioned and evolved. From re-examining ancient fire and food practices to considering how contemporary politics influenced discoveries – and even excavating Nazi labour camps – they’re deepening our understanding of humanity.

Six evening lectures and morning seminars will focus on a fascinating aspect – and a real-life story – of today’s archaeologists at work.  That’s not all!  
Join us for a Roman Convivium at the Carlyle Inn and Bistro on Sunday, November 16 and find out the true meaning of “when in Rome”!  

All evening and morning events include a presentation by the speaker, refreshments, and an opportunity to ask questions.

Columbus Community Centre, 232 Spencer St. East, Cobourg

7:30 pm to approximately 9:30 pm

October 23
The Future of the Past: Archaeology today
Michael Chazan, Professor, Anthropology, University of Toronto

Archaeology is a dynamic field of research with interdisciplinary teams using new methods to understand complex archaeological sites. Archaeological research is also situated in the contemporary world context, where discoveries about our human past often connect to powerful and essential issues of identity and politics. Using examples from research on human origins in South Africa and other projects, this talk will demonstrate the process of archaeological discovery.    

October 30
The Bronze Age: Novelty and innovation in art and technology
Carl Knappett, Walter Graham/Homer Thompson Chair in Aegean Prehistory, University of Toronto

The Bronze Age of Greece saw a remarkable flowering of artistic novelty and technological innovation, making this a rich theatre for investigating the dynamics of change. With the particular advantages brought by an archaeological outlook – both very long term and closely focused on materiality – this lecture will examine some of today’s concerns surrounding innovation and resilience through this Bronze Age lens.

November 6
Excavating modernity: An introduction to the archaeology of the contemporary past
Maria Theresia Starzmann, Assistant professor Archaeology, McGill University

The study of the “contemporary past” focuses its inquiry on the super-modern world, which is marked by an acceleration of innovations in the realms of communication, travel and economy. This presentation will provide an overview of several cases studies, including first results from excavations conducted at a former Nazi forced labor camp at Tempelhof airfield in Berlin, Germany.

November 13
15,000 Years of Success in Japan: What can the Jomon period teach us?
Gary Crawford, Professor, Anthropology, University of Toronto

The Jomon period existed for a staggering 15,000 years in Japan, ending only 1300-1400 years ago.  Neither hunter-gatherers nor farmers – and barely evolving – the Jomon cultures differed markedly from those of China, Near East, Mesoamerica, South America and others, which transformed from hunter-gatherers to farmers to centralized states. This lecture will offer perspectives from four decades of research on Jomon peoples’ interaction with plants and the broader ecology of northeastern Japan.

November 20
From field to feast: Food in the Roman world
Jane Francis, Associate Professor, Classics, Modern Language and Linguistics, Concordia University

The Roman diet is well known through ancient literary, but archaeological data can shed even greater light on dietary preferences that may change over time or reflect regional trends. This lecture reconstructs food in the Roman world through archaeobotanical research and the physical remains of tools and containers, and uses economic studies to demonstrate how foodstuffs moved around the Roman world.

November 27
The politics of archaeology
Tristan Carter, Associate Professor Anthropology, McMaster University

Politics and Eastern Mediterranean archaeology have been inextricably linked over the past 150 years in the Aegean, Anatolia, Levant and Mesopotamia. This lecture discusses foreign scholarly engagement in the region during the Ottoman Empire, and considers the intersection of national, local and global interest groups at the famed Anatolian Neolithic sites of Çatalhöyük and Göbekli Tepe. It will also touch on more recent times, examining the nature and significance of looting in times of conflict.

Port Hope Library, 31 Queen Street
9:00 am to 11:00 am

October 24
Tracking the earliest use of fire
Michael Chazan, Professor, Anthropology, University of Toronto

October 31
Exploring innovation through archaeology
Carl Knappett, Walter Graham/Homer Thompson Chair in Aegean Prehistory, University of Toronto

November 7
The Archaeology of Community: Understanding social life in the Neolithic
Maria Theresia Starzmann, Assistant professor Archaeology, McGill University

November 14
Taming the wild peach and wild rice in China: The first biotechnology experts
Gary Crawford, Professor, Anthropology, University of Toronto

November 21
Understanding ancient pottery: A hands-on examination
Jane Francis, Associate Professor, Classics, Modern Language and Linguistics, Concordia University

November 28
From dumb brute to kissing cousins: Rewriting Neanderthal prehistory
Tristan Carter, Associate Professor Anthropology, McMaster University

All evening events and morning seminars include a presentation by the speaker, refreshments, and an opportunity to ask questions.

Sunday afternoon, November 16, 2014

Carlyle Inn and Bistro
86 John Street
Port Hope

12:30 - 3 PM

Pat Bryan, Master of Ceremonies

Music by Fred Cory and Carol Hasek

Ever wondered what’s really behind the expression “When in Rome”? Join us at a Roman feast for the senses, with food, music, readings, debate, surprises and fun. Enjoy an authentic meal based on recipes of the ancient Romans and table talk, Roman style.

No need for a toga – modern day dress is fine.

Tickets are $45 per person.

Attendance is limited to 50 people, so order your tickets today from our Tickets Page.

For more information, call Joanne Bonebakker at 905.349.3402.


PAT BRYAN, Magister Bibendi

Pat Bryan was born in England and educated at Bromley Grammar School and Cambridge. After service in the Royal Air Force he married, and subsequently emigrated to Canada in 1956. Over the next 40 years he worked in advertising for a large and diverse group of clients in various firms and sometimes as free-lance.

In 2001, he self-published his first book, What Else You Got ?, an anecdotal memoir; seven more books followed.

His most successful fiction venture was a short story, after Dylan Thomas, entitled A Child’s Christmas in Port Hope , of which he has given readings on several occasions. He has also broadcast on Northumberland 89.7 FM, the local public radio station.

FRED COREY, recorder
Fred Cory has studied both jazz and classical music, earning a performance degree on flute from the University of Victoria and a diploma in jazz studies on saxophone at Vancouver Community College. In recent years, Fred has become interested in early music and taken up the recorder to play pre-classical music more authentically. Fred is also a registered massage therapist and a nutritional counsellor with a passion for challenging conventional wisdom on diet and health. Sometimes it’s hard to tell if he loves music more than butter.

CAROL HASEK, keyboard

Carol Hasek is new to Northumberland County, having moved here from
Toronto in 2012. She has enjoyed a varied career in music, starting out in classical music (U of T), taking a detour into popular music (working as a singer-songwriter, studio singer, backup musician), then back to classical music (10 years as a member of Tafelmusik). She plays piano, harpsichord, and flute. Carol is a vocal coach for Toronto’s famous performing arts high school, Wexford Collegiate School for the Arts, and has a thriving voice studio in Toronto, preparing young classical singers for university studies, and coaching music theatre professionals performing all over Canada and the US (Shaw, Stratford, National Arts Centre, Royal MTC, COC, on and off-Broadway). In Cobourg, Carol plays piano as part of a new classical trio with Fred Cory and Deborah Henderson.

our distinguished speakers on Archaeology

Tristan Carter is an Associate Professor in the Department of Archaeology McMaster University. His focus is Eastern Mediterranean prehistorian, examining stone tools to address debates spanning the first appearance of early humans in the Lower Palaeolithic to the emergence of state level societies in the Bronze Age. In 2013, he began a survey of a prehistoric quarry on the Cycladic island of Naxos, used by Neanderthals and more recent hunter-gatherers.

Dr. Carter received his PhD from the Institute of Archaeology at University College London in 1999.

Michael Chazan is a Professor in the Department of Anthropology and Director of the Archaeology Centre at the University of Toronto. He has carried out field work in Israel, Jordan, Egypt, France, and South Africa, and directs research at Wonderwerk Cave in South Africa with Francesco Berna of Simon Fraser University and Liora Kolska Horwitz of the Hebrew University.   

Dr. Chazan received his PhD from Yale University and has been a member of the faculty at the University of Toronto since 1997.

Gary W. Crawford is a Professor in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Toronto Mississauga, and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada. He specializes in the study of plant remains and the origins and intensification of agriculture; has carried out research in the Yellow River basin in China, northern Japan, Ontario and the United States; and is currently directing a project on the comparative historical ecology in Northeast Asia.  

Dr. Crawford received his PhD in 1979 from the University of North Carolina.

Jane Francis is an Associate Professor, Classics, Modern Language and Linguistics, at Concordia University.  Her research interests include the material culture of the Roman period, both on Crete and in southeast Turkey, particular pottery, sites, and aspects of food production.  Her archaeological fieldwork projects encompass Sphakia, Skoteino Cave, Moni Odigitria, Aptera, and Phalassarna in Crete; and the Misis Survey and Misis Excavations in Turkey.  

Dr. Francis received her PhD from Bryn Mawr College.

Carl Knappett is a Professor in the Department of Art at the University of Toronto, where he holds the Walter Graham/ Homer Thompson Chair in Aegean Prehistory.  He is Director of the new British School at Athens excavations at the Bronze Age site of Palaikastro in east Crete, and serves on the Scientific Committee of the Fyssen Foundation in Paris.

Dr. Knappett received his BA, MA and PhD in Archaeology from the University of Cambridge.

Maria Theresia Starzmann is Assistant Professor of Anthropology at McGill University. Her current research focuses on archaeological explorations of 20th and 21st century material culture; she previously studied the formation and transformation of Late Neolithic village sites in the Middle East. Other academic interests include the critical study of colonialism and imperialism, structural violence, and decolonial approaches in anthropology.  

Dr. Starzmann received her PhD from Binghamton University.