Past Events - 2009

Peabody Museum Lectures, Events, & Exhibits

All events are free and open to the public, except where noted below. All lectures are at the Geological Lecture Hall, 24 Oxford St., Cambridge, except where noted below. If you missed a lecture, check here for a free audio download.


Meet the Filmmakers

Feb. 11, 2009; 5:30 p.m.
Sherman Fairchild Auditorium, Fairchild Bldg., 7 Divinity Ave.

Sensory Ethnography: New Harvard Student Ethnographic Works -- Short video works about embodied experience, culture, and nature produced by Harvard students.


Feb. 26, 2009; 5:30 p.m
Yenching Institute, 2 Divinity Ave.

Hallam L. Movius Lecture: The Shock of the Old: New Discoveries in Ice Age Art
Paul G. Bahn, author and journalist-- Ice Age art is found every year in many parts of the world. This illustrated talk will provide an overview of the most interesting and important finds of recent years.


March 12, 2009; 5:30 p.m.
Geological Lecture Hall, 24 Oxford St.

How Much is Heritage Worth? Australia’s Greatest Rock Art Competes with its Most Valuable Industry
Iain Davidson, Professor of Archaeology, emeritus, University of New England, Australia


March 19, 2009; 5:30 p.m.
Yenching Institute, 2 Divinity Ave.

Gordon R. Willey Lecture: Itza and Kowoj: Conflicts and Factions in the Last Maya Kingdom
Prudence Rice, Professor of Anthropology, Southern Illinois University, Carbondale

America's Weekend Lecture

April 3, 2009; 5:30 p.m.
Geological Lecture Hall, 24 Oxford St.

Starting at Standing Rock: Following Custer and Sitting Bull to the Little Big Horn
Nathaniel Philbrick, author of Mayflower

America's Weekend Exhibition Opening

April 3, 2009; 6:30 p.m.–8:30 p.m.
Wiyohpiyata: Lakota Images of the Contested West

Colored drawings by Plains Indian warriors with historic objects from the Peabody’s collections, displayed in a gallery designed by a contemporary Lakota artist. For more on this exhibition, click here.

America's Weekend Seminar

April 4, 2009; 9 a.m.–5 p.m.
Geological Lecture Hall, 24 Oxford St.

Visualizing Power: Plains Pictographic Arts
Lectures, Discussion, & Tours; registration required. For more on this program, click here.


April 16, 2009; 5:30 p.m.
Yenching Institute, 2 Divinity Ave.

Founder's Lecture: Entangled at Catalhoyuk: Material Life in the First Cities
Ian Hodder, Dunlevie Family Professor, Department of Social and Cultural Anthropology, Stanford University

Exhibition Opening

April 29, 2009; 5 p.m.–7 p.m.

Avenue Patrice Lumumba: Photographs by Guy Tillim Photographer Guy Tillim traveled through four African nations, documenting the grand colonial architecture and how it has become part of a contemporary African stage. For more on this exhibition, click here.

Exhibition Opening

May 27, 2009; 5 p.m.–7 p.m.
Tozzer Library Gallery, 21 Divinity Ave.

Masked Festivals of Canton Bo, Southwest Ivory Coast Through rare drawings and photographs, along with masks from the Peabody Museum collections, Masked Festivals explores different kinds of masked spirit forms and their performances at festivals. For more on this exhibition, click here.

Archaeological Excavations in Harvard Yard

June 25, 2009; 10:30–11:30 AM  Harvard Yard Summer Excavation Opening Day 

Speakers include:

Jim Peters, Executive Director, Massachusetts Commission on Indian Affairs

Cheryl Andrews-Maltais, Chairman, Wampanoag Tribe of Gay Head (Aquinnah)

Bettina Washington, Tribal Historic Preservation Officer, Wampanoag Tribe of Gay Head (Aquinnah)

Archaeological Excavations in Harvard Yard

August 4, 2009; 8:30-11:30 AM Harvard Yard Summer Dig Results Day. (Rain date: August 6, 2009.)

See what the summer excavation in Harvard yard found. Staff and students will be available to answer questions. See related exhibition.

Opening Ceremony Archaeology of  Harvard Yard

September 10, 2009; 1:30 PM Harvard Yard near Matthews Hall 

Shelly Lowe, Executive Director, Harvard University Native American Program

William Fash, Director, Peabody Museum, Professor of Anthropology

Cheryl Andrews-Maltais, Chairwoman, Wampanoag Tribe of Aquinnah

Bruce Curliss, Nipmuc Nation

Tobias Vanderhoop, Tribal Administrator, Wampanoag Tribe of Aquinnah, KSG ’09

Tiffany Smalley, Harvard College ’11, Wampanaog Tribe of Aquinnah

The archaeological excavation of Harvard Yard resumes, as a class digs down to 17th-century Harvard. Find out about the Archaeology of Harvard Yard. See the related exhibition.

Book Launch Human Documents: Eight Photographers

September 17, 2009, 5-7 PM

Robert Gardner, who directed both Harvard's Film Study and Visual Arts Centers, conceived this collection of photographs that reveal a fuller understanding of human nature.


September 24, 2009, 5:30 PM Yenching Institute, 2 Divinity Ave., Cambridge

Hearing Voices…and Other Close Encounters with the Dead

Geraldine Brooks, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of March

Co-sponsored with the Harvard History and Literature Program

Smithsonian Museum Day and Family Event

September 26, 2009 

Free admission for two people all day with Smithsonian Museum Day Coupon (download your coupon here).

Family event, Maize at the Museum, runs 1-4 PM, and is free with general admission or Smithsonian Museum Day coupon (the coupon is for two people). Explore the importance of maize and corn throughout the Americas. Try your hand at grinding corn. Take home corn stories, recipes, and "amaizing" corn facts. Make a special corn craft. Appropriate for ages 6 and up.

Open House Zooarchaeology Lab

October 12, 2009; Noon-4:30 PM

Peabody Museum zooarchaeologists will demonstrate what animal bones can reveal using modern animal skeletons. This event is a favorite for children. Bring your own bone to get it identified. Free with Museum admission.


October 8, 2009; 5:30 PM, Sherman Fairchild Auditorium, 7 Divinity Ave., Cambridge

Monseñor Federico Lunardi (1880-1954): Italian Diplomat, Archaeologist and Mayan National Identity in Honduras

Dario Euraque, Professor of History and International Studies, Trinity College


October 14, 2009; 5:30 PM, Geological Lecture Hall, 24 Oxford St., Cambridge

From the Cave of Origins to the City of Sacrifice...and Beyond: A Mesoamerican Odyssey in a Recovered 16th-Century Mexican Codex

Davíd Carrasco, Neil L. Rudenstine Professor for the Study of Latin America

Family Program Archaeology of the Magnificent Maya

October 17, 2009; 1-4 PM

Investigate how archaeologists are unraveling the mysteries of Classic Maya culture and people. Try your hand at deciphering Maya numbers.  Make and take home images of bahlam (jaguar), chan (snake), and sotz’ (bat), complex Maya glyphs. Participate in a special gallery program at 2:00. Appropriate for ages 8 and up. Free with Museum admission.

Exhibition Opening Sacred Spaces: Reflections on a Sufi Path

October 22, 2009; 5:30-8:00 PM

Mixed-media compositions draw on Sufi poetry, traditional design motifs, antique miniature painting, contemporary photography, and calligraphy to create images of artist Samina Quraeshi's personal pilgrimages to Sufi sanctuaries in the Indus Valley and the role of Sufism in South Asian society.

Companion exhibition: Sacred Spaces: The World of Dervishes, Fakirs, and Sufis is on view through January 3, 2010 at Harvard's Arthur M. Sackler Museum.

Family Program Harvard Yard Archaeology

October 24, 2009; 9:30 AM-12:30 PM

Meet archaeologists in Harvard Yard and find out what lies beneath. Find out about the Archaeology of Harvard Yard. See related exhibition. Free in Harvard Yard. Rain location: Peabody Museum, free with Museum admission.

Results Day Harvard Yard Archaeology

October 29, 2009; 1-4:00 PM

Meet student and staff archaeologists in Harvard Yard and see what they discovered during their fall excavation. Find out about the Archaeology of Harvard Yard. See related exhibition. Drizzle or shine. 

Family Program Day of the Dead/Día de los Muertos

November 1, 2009; 1-4:30 PM. Free with Museum admission.

Day of the Dead/Día de los Muertos

November 2, 2009; 5-8 PM

Tickets required: available October 1, 2009


November 19, 2009; 5:30 PM, Geological Lecture Hall, 24 Oxford St., Cambridge

Much Ado About Nothing: 2012 and the Maya

Marc Zender, Research Associate, Maya Hieroglyphics, Peabody Museum



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