Egypt's Dispersed Heritage: views from Egypt

Lead Research Organisation: University College London
Department Name: Institute of Archaeology

Abstract

The ARHC-funded Artefacts of Excavation project revealed the expansive legacy of British fieldwork in Egypt and its distribution of archaeological finds to around 350 museums, in 27 countries, across 5 continents. No other area of world archaeology has a material legacy on this scale and 'ancient Egypt' remains one of the most popular types of museum exhibit worldwide. Yet that colonial history of dispersal is little known in Egypt itself and Egyptians have largely been disenfranchised from it. In Western museums, Egypt is rarely a specific modern country. If it is, it is generally seen as a place from where objects are taken, rather than a place populated with living communities also engaged and interested in these finds. Little attention has been given to the impact of these colonial legacies on modern Egyptian communities and how they feel about this history today. The removal and export of ancient Egyptian objects from Egypt by foreign archaeological missions, and the continued disenfranchisement of local communities from the production of the country's ancient history, has led to negative perceptions of archaeology and museums hosting Egyptian collections. There is, however, a demonstrable interest and demand in Egypt for better information about how artefacts excavated by foreign countries were exported and where they are now. This impact project is to ensure that Egyptians benefit from our UK-based findings on the dispersal of their heritage, to foster and increase capacity for international dialogue and knowledge exchange about these collections and histories, and to transform and empower Egyptian narratives around them. At the same time we wish to transform awareness in the UK of modern Egyptian interest in its heritage.

Our programme of dissemination, cultural events, artistic responses and museum exhibitions - co-developed with community partners - will increase understanding in Egypt about the conditions of export and what happened to artefacts once they had left the country. To achieve this we will translate and make accessible our key findings into Egyptian Arabic and tailor it for specific audiences. These audiences include the Ministry of Antiquities and Ministry of Tourism officials, museum curators, university staff and students, as well as school children, families, the general public and lower economic status communities. Moreover, these activities will provide a more participatory platform for Egyptians themselves to articulate their own thoughts and responses to this history. This will include a professional museum manual published by the International Council of Museums (ICOM) Egypt, press briefings for journalists and specially commissioned education packs for Egyptian schools (through Egyptian charity EducateMe). It will encompass social media activity, through Q&A live sessions, blogs and online comic narratives. Partnerships with Egyptian cultural NGOs, including El Sawy Culture Wheel, Mahatat for Contemporary Art and Tawasol, will allow us co-develop innovative creative responses to reach and enfranchise those audiences that might not traditionally visit museums. These cultural events, in turn, will help to inspire independent Egyptian artists who we will commission to produce small artistic works that can accompany a mobile temporary exhibition that will be designed for easy installation and transport in Egypt and the UK. The latter will challenge assumptions regarding modern Egypt by partnering these Egyptian artists with UK Museums (the Petrie Museum of Egyptian Archaeology, National Museums Scotland and Liverpool World Museum), which will provide them with the opportunity to travel to the UK to exhibit and share their works.

Planned Impact

We have identified 3 areas through which engagement would be achieved:

(1) Communities of Practice: professional heritage practitioners, such as curators, antiquities inspectors, and tour guides for whom we would offer guidance on accessing information about Egyptian antiquities now in foreign countries and possibilities for linking that to contemporary heritage discourses in Egypt;
(2) Communities of Interest: journalists and visual artists through which information can be interpreted and disseminated for targeted audiences;
(3) Communities of Place: NGOs and museums located within particular cultural hubs that are well-placed to engage a range of established local audiences.

We have co-developed a programme with our partners to share information, develop people-centred engagements and transform dialogues around Egyptian antiquities in foreign museums. Beneficiaries will be:

- Egyptian Ministry of Antiquities: Knowledge exchange workshops and provision of published information in Arabic will provide a context and guide to identifying material that left legally, facilitating the formation of clearer policies and practices.
- Egyptian university staff & students: Knowledge exchange workshops and published information in Arabic will inform new curriculum design to allow for the development of local knowledge economies and increase capacity to engage confidently with Egyptian heritage in a global context, enhancing opportunities for staff and students.
- Egyptian museum professionals: Knowledge exchange workshops, published information in Arabic and opportunities to participate in creative exhibitions will facilitate engagement with collections abroad, helping to make connections between material in Egypt and material in foreign institutions.
- Egyptian tourism sector: Workshops will provide opportunities to make international connections more easily, broadening and developing tour guide narratives around sites and artefacts.
- Egyptian primary & preparatory state education learners & teachers: Learning outputs can inspire young learners to see themselves as part of a global community beyond the limited resources of their surroundings. Training through EducateMe Professional development programme will help teachers develop alternative classes transforming how history is taught within Egyptian state school
- Egyptian heritage reporters & activists: Baseline information and knowledge exchange through our workshops will build journalist capacity.
- Emerging Egyptian street performers & visual artists: Site visits and activities will complement current efforts to embed Egyptian heritage within contemporary art. Responses will promote the unique performative and street art genre within Egypt at an international level allowing artists to gain from having their work showcased through our UK/Egypt partners
- Socially & economically marginalised groups in Cairo: Through Tawasol a marginalised youth can be encouraged to seek employment or training in tourism, heritage, performing art sectors. Female handicraft artists can benefit economically by having new inspiration and opportunity to develop their products
- Egyptian general public: Exhibitions, events and accessible information in Arabic on collections abroad, in a diverse range of media, will facilitate public expression in their preferred modes of expression (online / street events).
- UK museum sector & general public: By introducing Egyptian voices and Egyptian artistic installations we will challenge assumptions around relationship between ancient and modern Egypt, offering opportunities for UK museums to partner with Egyptians. Two UK workshops will form a means of sharing our experience with academics/museum professionals.
- Project partners: Opportunity to work with an international research institution (new for Egyptian partners) and form partnerships around archaeological research
- Project team: learn new ways of making research relevant

Publications

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Abd El-Gawad H (2021) Egypt's dispersed heritage: Multi-directional storytelling through comic art in Journal of Social Archaeology

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Abd El-Gawad, H. (2022) From Museums to Comics: Decolonising Egypt's Dispersed Heritage in ICME Newsletter (ICOM International Committee for Museums and Collections of Ethnography)

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Abd El-Gawad, H. (2021) Who Owns Ancient Egypt? in Egyptian Archaeology

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Carruthers W (2021) Special Issue: Inequality and Race in the Histories of Archaeology in Bulletin of the History of Archaeology

 
Title Bespoke set of playing cards 
Description Designed by project partner Nasser Junior, each card number reflects symbolism of number in ancient Egypt based on objects typologies at our UK partner museums.Each card has a comic drawing showing modern Egyptian take on the artefact and what it represents with an Egyptian idiom bringing it more meaningfully to Egyptian audiences. Each pack includes 5 extra cards with brief info on EDH the concept and the project and links to our information and partner museums website. These were showcased at Cairo Comic convention in November 2021. 
Type Of Art Artefact (including digital) 
Year Produced 2021 
Impact Picked up by Masrawy, the biggest and the first news portal in Egypt and Middle East and North Africa (MENA). At the Comic convention numerous visitors to the project's stall commented that the project was something important and worthy of attention being something they had not previously considered in this way and praised the accessibility of the narrative, including the Egyptian TV star Ahmed Amin, who bought the card and advised us to translate it into English and market it abroad. 
URL https://www.masrawy.com/news/news_various/details/2021/11/29/2131985/-%D9%83%D9%88%D8%AA%D8%B4%D9%8A...
 
Title Comic story 
Description Comic artists El3oba have created a series of comics telling dramatic stories relating to the history of the dispersal of Egyptian Antiquities. El3osba is a supergroup of diverse heroes created by Egyptians not only for Egyptians, but also those outside their homeland interested in getting to know more about the country through the internationally understood language of superheroes. Written by John Maher and Maged Refaat with art by Ahmed Raafat, "The League" (or "Gang" as it translates) is the first step in an "unstoppable" and persistent comic book universe for characters who hail from Egypt and the Middle East. Each of the six comic book heroes created uniquely embodies a different aspect of modern Egyptian culture (for more on El3oba see https://io9.gizmodo.com/the-io9-guide-to-the-egyptian-superhero-universe-of-el3-1827047479). They are dedicating a special to engaging with the research underpinning Egypt's Dispersed Heritage. 
Type Of Art Creative Writing 
Year Produced 2021 
Impact The comics were launched at the CairoComix Festival 2021, the largest such gathering in the Middle East with high public visibility and media attention: https://www.facebook.com/129395070591130/posts/1911488275715125/ 5-8 November 2021. 
URL https://www.facebook.com/1643571189196370/posts/2815411618678982/?d=n
 
Title Deena Mohamed comic art 
Description Deena Mohammed was commissioned by the project to produce a series of comics relating to the project's themes. The project is still under development but early art can be seen here (https://twitter.com/itsdeenasaur/status/1360352592543498241) and 
Type Of Art Artwork 
Year Produced 2020 
Impact The comic was launched at the CairoComix Festival 2021, the largest such gathering in the Middle East with high public visibility and media attention: https://www.facebook.com/129395070591130/posts/1911488275715125/ 5-8 November 2021. 
URL https://deenadraws.art/en/home
 
Title Nasser Jr Comic series 
Description The project commissioned cartoonist Mohammed Nasser [@Nasser_Junior] (based in Alexandria, Egypt) to respond to the findings of the 'Artefacts of Excavation' project in a series of comics for social media in order to engage Egyptian audiences in some of the issued raised, including issues of colonialism, autocolonism, place of humane remains in museums, disenfranchisement of Egyptians form the heritage, accessibility of heritage issues and more. Twelve in total were issued between February 2020 and October 2020. 
Type Of Art Artwork 
Year Produced 2020 
Impact The first three releases garnered some 128,977 impressions, 20,486 engagements (interactions with tweets) and 1,833 likes. The comments indicated that the initiative had impact in sparking discussion of issues as we had hope, in being a model of engagement and as something to emulate, and in bringing more Egyptian voices into interaction with UK museum collections. One of the comics featured a mummy looked after by the Horniman Museum in London, an institution that has on the basis of seeing the artistic product expressed interest in developing a temporary exhibition to bring these voices, themes and ideas into the same space as their Egyptian collection. We are currently looking at making a formal exhibition proposal. The work has been picked up and covered extensively by the Egyptian media (https://www.dostor.org/3247256, https://www.al-fanarmedia.org/2020/08/arabic-comics-reach-a-wider-audience-through-digital-projects/ and most notably Egypt's leading digital news outlet https://www.masrawy.com/news/news_various/details/2020/12/16/1932511), has been integrated into the collections management system of the National Museum of Scotland and been been utilised extensively in teaching and conference by scholars to illustrate contemporary heritage issues. A request was made from Manchester Museum to commission one for their new Egyptian galleries and this was accommodated within the project. Two new display panels have been produced at UCL's Petrie Museum using the comics that relate to their collections (due to covid and museum closures public impact has still to be evaluated). The comics were then picked up by the Egypt Exploration Society's Egyptian Archaeology magazine, which for the next few years will include one comic per issue (2 produced a year). 
URL https://twitter.com/nasser_junior?lang=en
 
Title Temporary exhibition at Fayoum Heritage Festival, Egypt 
Description As part of the Fayoum Heritage Festival, Egypt (9-17 December), the Caricature Museum and Fayoum Art Center hosted a 6 panel exhibition (in Egyptian Arabic) telling the story of the dispersal of archaeological finds from the Fayoum to museums worldwide. The Artefacts of Excavation website provided all the raw data for the designers to map out where heritage from the region is in the world today. Nasser Junior's comics were also featured on a panel. 
Type Of Art Artistic/Creative Exhibition 
Year Produced 2020 
Impact tbc 
 
Description We worked with a series of emerging Egyptian artists to produce comics, performances, graphic images and podcasts based on collections information from our UK partner museums and archives. We found that these more informal modes of communication created a friendly context for addressing tough questions around colonial acquisition of Egyptian heritage, thereby creating a more inviting space for dialogue than just simply 'public debate'. The artistic products drew on ancient Egyptian objects and archives in our UK partner museums, as well as the stories of their discovery and removal in the late 19th and early 20th centuries but then placed them into contemporary situations of concern to modern Egyptian communities. These elicited new knowledge about collections through the introduction of modern Egyptian terms, names and references which were recorded into the museums' databases, forming the basis for new collections interpretations and displays. It has also clearly demonstrated the diversity of views held in Egypt surrounding ancient Egyptian heritage.

At the National Museum of Scotland this led to the inclusion of Egyptian terms for objects within the museum database and to link objects to the comics. Museum catalogues often embody the information that is valued by institutions, and the inclusion of Egyptian perspectives within collection management systems provides longer-term interpretive authority between museums and Egyptian publics as the basis for future curatorial action. The museum also produced a dedicated webpage in Egyptian Arabic, the first foreign language page created for its World Culture collections. Our public event in February 2020 at the museum demonstrated that it was possible to address colonial histories, maintain positive public engagement and in so doing bring benefits to the interpretation of collections.

On the basis of our activities Manchester Museum commissioned a comic was co-planned and co-produced by project researchers, comic artists, and the museum curator. This was delivered as part of Manchester's future permanent display, thereby embedding Egyptian voices and views in the North West of UK where the majority of its migrant population is from the Middle East and North African (MENA) region. At the Petrie Museum of Egyptian and Sudanese Archaeology, two comics that had been released on social media were transformed into panels for permanent display, and the introductory gallery panels were translated into Egyptian Arabic for visitor handouts.

At the Horniman Museum engagements with Egyptian community schools initiated the development of the educational resources for UK children too and provided new skills for the education team in working with communities. Ancient Egypt is the most popular programme offered by museum education departments, but classes can often reproduce stereotypes and is a missed opportunity to engage in positive views of a modern majority Muslim country. The project facilitated the purchase of new, contemporary objects for the handling collection.

Our work with these museums has opened up new research questions on how to most effectively incorporate new stories and perspectives on Egypt with gallery display, but also how to transform the way we talk about ancient Egypt in UK museums, away from the stereotypes, in education departments, marketing, social media, and collections management

There was also considerable impact in Egypt with numerous requests for workshops and collaborations not just in Cairo, but also in more rural areas of northern Egypt such as Sharqiya and Fayoum highlighting the importance and impact of social media project engagement in the first place and the success of relatable approaches. At these workshops our UK partners were able to join online through video links, opening dialogue between UK institutions and Egyptian communities. The project was extensively covered in the Egyptian media, through podcasts, tv broadcasts, magazine and newspaper articles and was the recipient of awards within the country.

Since our last report in March 2021 we have continued to see increasing interest in the project and its findings with further media coverage, invitations for a major presentation at Cairo ComicCon, more UK museum enquiries on helping to decolonise their provisions around ancient Egypt displays (including Sheffield Museums, P
Exploitation Route - New approaches in designing educational resources and activities for school children in the UK and Egypt on museum collections of ancient Egypt
- New approaches to narrating museum displays and incorporating more aspect of Egyptian heritage and modern Egyptian voices
- New models of public communication surrounding the collecting histories of Egyptian antiquities
Sectors Education,Leisure Activities, including Sports, Recreation and Tourism,Culture, Heritage, Museums and Collections

 
Description The project has directly informed policy development at the UK Charity The Egypt Exploration Society: The EES have used the project as a means to address their colonial history, with an editorial of the Society's magazine, Egyptian Archaeology, in February 2021 advocating for new approaches to Egyptology that more actively and broadly include Egyptian colleagues. "from the findings made by Heba and your social media conversations, a focus group will be formed to assist the EES Board of Trustees in creating an ethical commitment which will inform our future operations." (https://www.ees.ac.uk/news/good-archaeology-bad-archaeologists) Nationally, we have actively developed public services for museums. For instance, the Horniman Museum in London have expanded their education provision on the topic of ancient Egypt and improved the breadth of their handling collection through our project intervention to represent modern and not just ancient Egypt thereby opening up possibilities of addressing other areas of the National Curriculum such as geography teaching (note delay in implementation due to most staff being on furlough 2020-21 - more impact forthcoming). The Manchester Museum was inspired to commission their own comic and images produced through our project for the redesign of their ancient Egypt gallery. The National Museum of Scotland produced their first ever non-English language collections page (in Egyptian Arabic) opening up their World Cultures collections to new audiences and establishing a model for inclusion that can inspire work in other types of collections, not just Egypt (https://www.nms.ac.uk/collections-research/our-research/current-research/egypt-s-dispersed-heritage/). The NMS have also developed new provisions to include findings from our project in the museum catalogue for longer term curation possibilities and institutional memory. The Petrie Museum of Egyptian Archaeology produced new display panels for their introductory informed by the project's findings and including project resources, as well as Egyptian Arabic translations of their new entrance gallery thereby improving access and inclusion for Egyptian diaspora communities in London and the UK. Our project was further invited to contribute to a toolkit produced by the Society of Museum Archaeology; the 'Communicating Archaeology' resource that will afford museum archaeologists and others, insights into the wide range of use and engagement activities that archaeological collections are used to deliver (http://socmusarch.org.uk/training/smart-project/). We have taken on further consultancy work, being invited to advise Sheffield Museums education team on decolonising their offerings, Paisley Museum on the redesign of their galleries, and Horniman Museum with an exhibition proposal on contemporary Egyptian women and Heritage. Internationally, we have informed museum sector agendas through invited publications in ICOM's newsletter for Museums of Ethnography (published in Feb 2022), the Canadian Museum Association's flagship publication MUSE (forthcoming 2022), and the NSW Education Board in Australia (January 2022). The project has enhanced the quality of life of three community schools in some of the poorest parts of Cairo and northern Egypt, by developing workshops and providing educational resources for children there. The Egyptian teachers of these schools have new contacts with the UK museums allowing them to develop English language provision alongside history education (see shorturl.at/mnryO or https://twitter.com/aliceestevenson/status/1326894006593351685). At the other end of the spectrum, in one of Egypt's leading Higher Education architecture programmes our project has been embedded as the focus of a new module for postgraduate architecture students on designing museums in Egypt and therefore training a new generation of practitioners. Enhancing quality of life through creative outputs has been central, and the use of comics has been seen to expand the audiences of comics in Arabic to non-specialist audiences (https://www.al-fanarmedia.org/2020/08/arabic-comics-reach-a-wider-audience-through-digital-projects/). Two comics based on the project findings with El3oba and Deena Mohammed were launched at Cairo's biggest Comic Convention (ComicCon) leading to prime time tv slots covering the project. Several of our partners which were unable to work with us due the pandemic are keen to take forward initial plans, including with Tawesol Egypt who will use images from UK collections as inspiration develop community craft projects to benefit those on low incomes in the poorest parts of Cairo. We are also expecting community performances of artists this summer (2022) and the opening of temporary exhibitions later in 2022.
First Year Of Impact 2021
Sector Communities and Social Services/Policy,Construction,Education,Leisure Activities, including Sports, Recreation and Tourism,Culture, Heritage, Museums and Collections
Impact Types Cultural,Societal,Policy & public services

 
Description Postgraduate course materials and assignments
Geographic Reach Africa 
Policy Influence Type Influenced training of practitioners or researchers
Impact In collaboration with Arab Academy For Science, Technology And Maritime Transport, College Of Engineering And Technology, Department Of Architectural Engineering And Environmental Design (Cairo Campus) we helped to develop a module for the M.Sc. Architectural Engineering and Environmental Design called 'Egyptian Regions and Architecture'. The module's aim was shifted to focus on the development of Egyptian museums and galleries in the context of global heritage. The main aim was a reading of Egyptian urbanity as "the place" from different perspectives then representing "narrating" this identity using different medium within museums. Our project was the module's primary case study, providing source materials and guest lectures on the project. The module was only half complete sadly because Covid-19 led to the closure of the university and the practical elements had to be abandoned. We hope to revive the module when possible.
 
Description Postgraduate course materials and assignments
Geographic Reach Multiple continents/international 
Policy Influence Type Influenced training of practitioners or researchers
Impact The comics we produced for the project were incorporated into a lecture of University of Cambridge's Egyptian Teaching Fellow, Dr Chihab el Khacheb who used our comics in one of his lectures as part of a 1st-year MPhil course at the Faculty of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies in Cambridge. The course is called "MES38: Politics and Culture of the Contemporary Middle East", and the lecture where he used our project resources was called "Cultural Development and Heritage". The lecture was recorded and uploaded on Friday, October 16th, and he has discussed its contents with students on Thursday, October 22nd and Tuesday, October 27th 2020.
URL https://www.ames.cam.ac.uk/study-us/prospective-undergraduates/what-can-i-study/course/mes38-history...
 
Description Postgraduate module designed around project
Geographic Reach Africa 
Policy Influence Type Influenced training of practitioners or researchers
Impact The module evaluation demonstrated that the students had a new, changed perspective on the potential of museums in Egypt which they had largely seen as institutions for tourists rather than Egyptian inspired enterprises for local community benefit. The successful evaluation has led to the course being approved for a second year and will run again in May-June 2022.
URL http://shaimaa-keephuntingphotos.blogspot.com/2021/07/post-graduation-egyptian-regions-and.html
 
Description Project selected as case study for national museum toolkit
Geographic Reach National 
Policy Influence Type Influenced training of practitioners or researchers
Impact Egypt's Dispersed Heritage was selected to feature as a primary case study in the Society for Museum Archaeology Arts Council England-funded resource document featuring best practice case studies for engagement of all types with archaeological collections (Communicating Archaeology: Case studies in the use of, and engagement with, archaeological collections). The resource provides inspiration and practical advice for museums and others in the sector wishing to develop similar projects and takes the form of an A4 booklet for digital download or hard copy print and would be created as an accessible pdf.
URL http://socmusarch.org.uk/training/smart-project/
 
Description Horniman Museum Education Department 
Organisation Horniman Museum and Gardens
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution The Horniman Museum was not originally one of our partner UK Museums but became interested in the project. In taking this collaboration forward we decided to focus efforts in the education department to assist with the redevelopment of their resources for their 'Ancient Egypt' schools programme. This involved collecting original Egyptian craft products from one of our other Egypt partner organisation for the schools handling collection, partnering a school group in the UK with a school group in Egypt and brining Egyptian voices into the curriculum so that UK children could have the opportunity to learn more about modern Egypt and connect Egyptian children with the UK.
Collaborator Contribution The Horniman Museum provided resources for the development of school packs in Egypt (images and information about Egyptian objects) and shared their time and resources to help develop events to connect Egyptian and British school children.
Impact A planned knowledge exchange event with multiple museum education departments, possible publication focussed on this activity.
Start Year 2019
 
Description A talk or presentation - Free public online zoom lecture, plus Q&A for Egypt Exploration Society 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact 117 joined a live online Zoom lecture hosted by the Egypt Exploration Society on the Egypt's Dispersed Heritage Project. There were lots of questions and discussion afterwards and the project Twitter feed and Facebook pages showed an increase in traffic as well.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2020
 
Description #EOTalks 3: Egypt's Comics Superheroes Confronting Egyptology's Colonial Legacies 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact A free online Zoom on August 7th for the third of 'Everyday Orientalism's' 2020 #EOTalks series. The discussion panel focussed on the role of non academic Egyptian voices in the decolonising dialogue. The event was conceived by the Egypt's Dispersed Heritage team, and we were joined by comic artists Deena Mohammed, Nasser Junior, and El3osba to discuss how comics can be used to challenge western stereotypes of Egypt and its heritage. There were 49 participants who attending the live event and Q&A, but the YouTube recording reached a much wider audience with some 600 views recorded within the first week of upload.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2020
URL https://everydayorientalism.wordpress.com/2020/07/28/eotalks-3-egypts-comics-superheroes-confronting...
 
Description #EOTalks 4: Your Mummies, Their Ancestors? Caring for and About Ancient Egyptian Human Remains 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact A discussion panel that focussed on the ethical entanglements of caring for ancient Egyptian human remains. The event was conceived by Charlotte Parent and Heba Abdel Gawad, and organized in collaboration with the the Egypt Exploration Society and Egypt's Dispersed Heritage project. The EDH comics addressing Egyptian mummified remains were a key departure point for giving insight into how Egyptian feel about the presence of mummified remains in museums worldwide. A total of 294 people attended the Zoom lecture, a recording of which was posted on YouTube. It sparked more that 50 questions afterwards, continued a long online engagement on Twitter and led to a request from the Royal Museum Ontario to work with Egypt's Dispersed Heritage on how to represent it's displays (https://twitter.com/thogreiner/status/1295739757734100995)
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2020
URL https://everydayorientalism.wordpress.com/2020/07/22/eotalks-your-mummies-their-ancestors-caring-for...
 
Description Feature on MBC Egypt's 'Your Egyptian Morning' programme 
Form Of Engagement Activity A broadcast e.g. TV/radio/film/podcast (other than news/press)
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact A three-minute segment on one of premier Egypt's free-to-air channel which was broadcast on 10 February 2022. The segment has had 6.2k views on its Facebook link and this led to an increase of 820 new followers for the project's Facebook page and increased engagement.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2022
URL https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=638346664139965&extid=NS-UNK-UNK-UNK-IOS_GK0T-GK1C&ref=sharing
 
Description Free public online zoom lecture, plus Q&A for Egypt Exploration Society 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact 260 people attended a free online Zoom lecture 'Egypt's Dispersed Heritage' at 17:00 on Thursday 28 May, hosted by the Egypt Exploration Society. The project was presented and there were many questions in the Q&A afterwards seeking further information and interest in engaging with the project. The project Twitter feed and Facebook pages showed significant increased traffic and an increase in number of followers in the hours after the lecture.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2020
 
Description Free public webinar, plus Q&A for Egypt Exploration Society 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact 340 people tuned into a live Webinar entitled "Good Archaeology, Bad Archaeologists?" on Friday 12 June. This was a panel debate on unpacking the colonial history of the Egypt Exploration Society, with project research assistant, Heba Abd el-Gawad. In addition to the numerous questions and discussion, as well as requests for more information and collaboration (see below) one of the most important impacts was as described by the Director of the EES: "from the findings made by Heba and your social media conversations, a focus group will be formed to assist the EES Board of Trustees in creating an ethical commitment which will inform our future operations." (https://www.ees.ac.uk/news/good-archaeology-bad-archaeologists) Our project is therefore now shaping policy. This has also led to the invitation to provide an editorial for Egyptian Archaeology magazine on how the EES will address its colonial histories.

The project was used to demonstrate one approach to this and examples of Egyptian voices and views on the topic. The project's participatory approach underpinned the panel, with views invited on social media prior to the event to inform and shape the discussion and presentations themselves were interspersed with live polls. There were dozens of questions afterwards and a long discussion with the session running 1 hour over its advertised time to accommodate interest. Feedback on social media and in the associated chat window of the project demonstrated a change in views and opinions, increased interest in the project, and suggested people would change their approaches in areas such as museum practice and higher education:
""It made me reflect on the frozen landscape images we use in museums and rethink of the ones I will be using from now on"; "Made me reflect on how I should make my archives active in communities rather than passive."; ""As an outsider to the field seeing such an open and honest discussion is encouraging to do more in Classical archaeology"; ""Never thought of impact of colonial legacies on modern Egyptians before"".

The debate led Egyptologists to reflect further, as seen in this blog from Dr Chris Naunton: https://chrisnaunton.com/2020/06/13/questions-of-national-identity-in-response-to-and-support-of-a-recent-ees-seminar/

Following the discussion the project received email requests for involvement in several other initiatives:
1. Invitation to work with Bolton Museum and Art Gallery on a decolonising the collection project
2. Invitation from archaeologist Dr Penny Wilson to start some community engagement projects associated with her Egyptian excavations
3. Anna Mackay organiser of tours to Egypt emailed after the event to express she will now start offering more holistic tours representative of Egypt's multi layered heritage with intensive 5 day stays in Cairo. Example of tours currently on offer: https://yourjourney.com/project/in-the-footsteps-of-ramesses-the-great/
4. Dr Hanna Sonbol at Munster University emailed seeking discussions/advice on tackling colonial legacies with the public.
5. Dr Jenny Cromwell, lecturer at Manchester University, emailed to seek in framing her future community project with unaccompanied youth refugees & their perceptions of their heritage in UK (project is still in application drafting stage)
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2020
URL https://www.ees.ac.uk/news/good-archaeology-bad-archaeologists
 
Description Interview for YouTube channel about the project 
Form Of Engagement Activity Engagement focused website, blog or social media channel
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Research Assistant Heba Abd el Gawad and one of the artist we commissioned for the project were interviewed for the media channel Digital Hammurabi, a public outreach/digital humanities project which aims to provide reliable, accurate information about the Ancient Near East in an engaging way. The interview was posted on their yYouTube channel which on the date of posting (24 April 2020) had 14.1k subscribers.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2020
URL https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qpg_1cOGGSY&feature=youtu.be
 
Description Manchester Museum Podcast 
Form Of Engagement Activity A broadcast e.g. TV/radio/film/podcast (other than news/press)
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Project researcher Heba Abd el-Gawad in conversation with Curator Dr Campbell Price for Manchester Museum's podcast giving the project background from 'Artefacts of Excavation' through to the current work of 'Egypt's Dispersed Heritage'. The podcast matches the project aims in addressing key museum issues: how museums care and take action to build understanding, empathy and love for our world and each other. Through our collections we learn about our past, but what role can we play in understanding and shaping our present and future together?
The podcast reached a wide audience and has fed into discussions regarding the treatment of Egyptian ethnographic museums such as the Pitt Rivers Museum, with the Director of the Museum, Laura van Broekhoven fielding a question during a broadcast on recent policy and practice changes relating to human remains at the Pitt Rivers about Egyptian remains by referring the audience to this podcast (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7hAG8WqTSRs&feature=youtu.be from 01:05:27) and was selected by the Museums Association in April 2021 as an example of decolonial museum practice in the podcast hub: https://www.museumsassociation.org/campaigns/decolonising-museums/podcasts-and-radio/
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2020
URL https://www.mmfromhome.com/podcast/episode/39f9e1a5/who-owns-egyptian-heritage-with-heba-abd-el-gawa...
 
Description ONline video discussion 
Form Of Engagement Activity A broadcast e.g. TV/radio/film/podcast (other than news/press)
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Recorded interview on 'Egypt's Dispersed Heritage' for Human Stories, a digital humanities initiative that hosts free, open-access teaching and learning resources about different kinds of peoples, humans and non-humans who make up the world we live in today, including those who study them
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2021
URL https://www.humanstories.ca/blog/heba-abd-el-gawad-egypts-dispersed-heritage
 
Description Online discussion, turned public podcast 
Form Of Engagement Activity Engagement focused website, blog or social media channel
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Online discussion turned open access podcast with German anthropologists based at the University of Cologne for the "Museums in Motion Workshop Series" in mid-February 2021. Opportunity to explore project with colleagues outside of Egyptology and archaeology, and then share this publicly as part of the 'BoasBlogs' forum. Posted online on 9 March so awaiting to see what impact might follow at time of submisison.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2021
URL https://boasblogs.org/dcntr/egypts-dispersed-heritage/
 
Description Online public lecture for Chau Chak Wing Museum, Australia 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Postgraduate students
Results and Impact A public pre-recorded lecture 'Your ancient Egypt, their living: centering Egyptian communities in Egypt's dispersed heritage' given by Heba Abd el Gawad for Chau Chak Wing Museum, Australia on 28 October 2021 proved so popular that it was requested to become a permanent learning resource on DART (Distance And Rural Technology) Learning, a service provided by the New South Wales Department of Education. The website allows teachers, parents and students to find incredible Live, By Request, or On Demand learning experiences offered by museums, galleries, research institutes, scientists, writers, athletes, artists, educational organisations, musicians, zoos and many more.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2021
URL https://dartlearning.org.au/excursion/your-ancient-egypt-their-living-centering-egyptian-communities...
 
Description Podcast & webpage relating to our panel event at the National Museum of Scotland 
Form Of Engagement Activity A broadcast e.g. TV/radio/film/podcast (other than news/press)
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Based on our panel event held at the National Museum of Scotland (NMS) in February, the NMS created a bespoke webpage not only with a link to the podcast, but with related content, including information about our comic series, our engagement with Scottish Museum collections more broadly and also to outputs from the previous AHRC project 'Artefacts of Excavation' including the book Scattered Finds and our webresource. The webpage was also translated into Egyptian Arabic (paid for by the AHRC project budget) (https://www.nms.ac.uk/collections-research/egypts-dispersed-heritage-arabic/) which represents the NMS's first non English collections webpage setting the direction not only for future collaboration with Egyptians and a more inclusive approach to its presentation and curation of Egyptian collections (e.g. see https://twitter.com/eloquentpeasant/status/1319632637695303681), but also for the NMS's engagement with source communities in the future.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2020
URL https://www.nms.ac.uk/collections-research/our-research/current-research/egypt-s-dispersed-heritage/
 
Description Podcast Episode for Wonder House podcast 
Form Of Engagement Activity A broadcast e.g. TV/radio/film/podcast (other than news/press)
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Episode 18 of the Wonder House podcast released on 17 January 2021 - interview about project work to promote project and model of engagement. The Wonder House is a podcast series that shares some of the most innovative contemporary approaches to decolonising museums intended to empower and inspire to learn and experiment.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2020
URL https://thewonderhouse.co.uk/alice-stevenson
 
Description Podcast for History of Archaeology podcast 
Form Of Engagement Activity A broadcast e.g. TV/radio/film/podcast (other than news/press)
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Podcast for History of Archaeology webblog.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2020
URL https://historyofarchaeologyioa.weebly.com/historians-of-archaeology/heba-abd-el-gawad
 
Description Podcast for Wonder House Podcast Series 
Form Of Engagement Activity A broadcast e.g. TV/radio/film/podcast (other than news/press)
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact This interview with Research Assistant, Heba Abd el-Gawad, formed episode 19 of Egypt's Dispersed Heritage
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2021
URL https://thewonderhouse.co.uk/heba-abd-el-gawad
 
Description Project Facebook Page 
Form Of Engagement Activity Engagement focused website, blog or social media channel
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Facebook page for project created for engagement with audiences in Egypt. The majority of posts were in Egyptian Arabic, sharing the comics, podcasts and events. The page had bespoke graphic design by Egyptian artist. To date (15 March 2022) it has more than 6500 followers with a daily interaction of over 300.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2020
URL https://www.facebook.com/EgyptsDispersedHeritage/
 
Description Project feature and interviews on National Egyptian TV 
Form Of Engagement Activity A broadcast e.g. TV/radio/film/podcast (other than news/press)
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Research Assistant and one of our artist collaborators from El3oba were interviewed live for Egyptian National State TV Channel 2 (one of the two national TV channels in Egypt) on the TV programme 'Youth Live' on August 25 at 11am. The project was the main feature of the second half of the programme, with 20 minutes of airtime devoted to the initiative.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2020
URL https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rUVbZvMNvTs&feature=youtu.be
 
Description Public Panel Debate National Museum Scotland 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Free public panel debate at the National Museum of Scotland chaired by journalist Samira Ahmed entitled 'Egypt Past and Present in Dialogue' on Saturday 22nd February. Panel members included: Dr Margaret Maitland (Senior Curator), Dr Alice Stevenson (Project lead), and Heba Abd el-Gawad (Project research assistant). Each panelist present short 10-minute think pieces based on the project, followed by a group discussion led by Samira Ahmed, and opening up floor to general public to ask questions. The panel was professional recorded by the NMS for an official podcast which will be posted to the NMS soundcloud for longer term impact and engagement (https://soundcloud.com/nationalmuseumsscotland).

The event was 'sold out' with 210 tickets secured. All ticketholders were sent the agenda on Tue 18 Feb. This included a request that ticketholders advise if they are unable to attend, so that their place could be allocated to someone else. Following that, 34 tickets were returned and 15 tickets were issued to new enquirers / walk ups on the day. In total, 120 attended on the day.

For the general public, the written evaluation responses were overwhelmingly positive with comments confirming that the panel was 'thought-provoking', 'Very interesting and informative'; 'Insightful', 'challenging'; 'Enjoyable, stimulating', and 'gives a whole different look on it'.

For the National Museum of Scotland the event has provided a model of engagement for the institution. Two curatorial team members that attended the event commented that the event was a valuable indication of the interest in the public realm of the histories behind the collection and that the NMS could hold more challenging event that engage with contemporary issues that tackle head-on the sorts of scrutiny museums are under in the decolonising rhetoric currently visible across media and popular culture. Dr Margaret Maitland who participated in the panel noted that 'I think the event will have a real legacy in how the Museum considers its responsibilities towards communities outside Scotland in the future' and has suggested further dates for impact activity in the coming months based on the success of this event.

Social Media report from the NMS: The Facebook event created on the National Museums Scotland page had a reach of 6.2k, with 195 responses and this led to 22 ticket clicks. Although it is likely that other clicks on the link in the main event description have not been counted in this round-up. From the main National Museums Scotland accounts, there were three tweets sent, gaining 13,486 impressions and 144 engagements. There was two Facebook post sent, gaining a reach of 14,311 reach and 119 engagements.There were 1169 page views of the Event page on the NMS website, with the average time on page being much longer for those linked through with the shortlink and a high percentage of traffic for this coming from the Marketing email. This would indicate this is a more engaged group and the targeted promotion has worked well.

Our partnership with the NMS has also made the news in Egypt (https://www.dostor.org/3247256)
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2020
URL https://www.nms.ac.uk/exhibitions-events/events/national-museum-of-scotland/egypt-past-and-present-i...
 
Description School visit 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact Two of our partner museums joined remotely to a classroom workshop occurring at a community school. Developed, delivered, and led by local schoolteacher, Haisam Sayed, this initiative promotes reading and critical thinking among deprived school children in rural villages of Egypt's Delta based primarily at Sharkiya, near the ancient site of Tell Basta. Based in the backyard of Haisam's father house and relying on his personal funds from his basic teaching salary, stories truck organises creative writing, drawing, and storytelling sessions which tour nearby villages. The Petrie Museum and National Museum of Scotland shared stories of objects from the area now in UK museums with the children who had the opportunity to learn about the history of excavation in their village and at the same time have a lesson on speaking English.
The event got media attention (e.g. https://www.babmsr.com/%D9%87%D8%A8%D8%A9-%D8%B9%D8%A8%D8%AF%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%AC%D9%88%D8%A7%D8%AF-%D8%AA%D9%88%D8%AB%D9%82-%D8%B1%D8%AD%D9%84%D8%A9-%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%A8%D8%AD%D8%AB-%D8%B9%D9%86-%D8%A2%D8%AB%D8%A7%D8%B1/) leading to other community schools and Egyptian organisations to request similar workshops as well as workshops on the project itself and how to develop similar initiatives.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2020
URL https://www.babmsr.com/%D9%87%D8%A8%D8%A9-%D8%B9%D8%A8%D8%AF%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%AC%D9%88%D8%A7%D8%AF-%D8...
 
Description The Winter Lecture for Bristol Museum 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Heba reflected on UCL's AHRC funded Egypt's Dispersed Heritage project journey so far for Bristol Museum as the Winter Lecture Event. Through the project's outputs, she shared the challenges and opportunities, and the different Egypts they have encountered and learnt from.

Bristol Museums have delivered a Winter Lecture Series between October and April every year since 1948. Past speakers have included many of the leading experts of their time and some famous faces. Today, the Winter Lectures are sponsored by the Friends of Bristol Museums, Galleries & Archives and are free and open to all. Lectures are all connected in some way to Bristol Museum's amazing collections and cover a range of subjects including geology, natural history, archaeology, art and world cultures
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2022
URL https://www.bristolmuseums.org.uk/bristol-museum-and-art-gallery/whats-on/winter-lecture-egypt-and-i...
 
Description Training workshop for Scottish Museum sector 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Workshop organised in partnership with the National Museums Scotland 'Ancient Egypt and East Asia National Programme' held at the National Museum of Scotland, Friday 21 February 2020. Free training attended by curators and collections staff of the following organisations: University of Aberdeen, McManus Museum Dundee, East Ayrshire Leisure, Perth Museum & Art Gallery, The Hunterian University of Glasgow, Glasgow Museums, Dumfries Museum. The full day's programme included presentations on how to use the project data produced by the 'Artefacts of Excavation' project (what 'Egypt's Dispersed Heritage' is a follow-on for) and discussion of modern Egyptian attitudes to their heritage. Ahead of the workshop the museums had sent examples of objects in the collection for the RA to show in Egypt to generate discussion and these views were shared back with the museums.
Written evaluation forms at the end confirmed that the impact of the engagement for many museum professionals:
- one attendant noted 'the greatest benefit has been deriving a sense of the current discursive and ethical framework in 21st century Egyptology',
- another welcomed the opportunity to see the other side of prominent personalities linked to their collection like Amelia Edwards.
- Other impacts include comments that they will 'make use of the [Artefacts of Excavation] website to match up further sites with their collection and be able to add more background and history of collection to their documentation of the collection.
- Another museum practitioner who attended said that after the workshop they would 'suggest the use of social media posts in Arabic relating to our collections in order to reach out to indigenous Egyptian living in the UK'
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2020
URL https://www.nms.ac.uk/national-international/sharing-collections/national-projects/aeea-training-pro...
 
Description University of Swansea seminar presentation 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Postgraduate students
Results and Impact Invited to give the departmental lunchtime seminar at the University of Swansea's Classics, Ancient History and Egyptology Department on Monday 29 November 2021.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2021