'Winged Jewels of the Nile' topic of GCC History Club lecture Feb. 6
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'Winged Jewels of the Nile' topic of GCC History Club lecture Feb. 6

Jan 9, 2019

Press release:

The Genesee Community College History Club is excited to invite the public to the first Spring 2019 Historical Horizons Lecture Series event on Wednesday, Feb. 6, at 7 p.m. to hear Rozenn Bailleul-LeSuer, Ph.D., discuss the "Winged Jewels of the Nile."

Birds and bird imagery filled the world of the ancient Egyptians. Every fall, the arrival of millions of waterfowl in the delta marshes coincided with the Nile flood.

The Egyptians saw in these natural and cyclical events a symbolic reenactment of the moment of creation when, according to some versions of the myth, a divine goose laid an egg on the first mound emerging from the water. From this egg hatched the sun god, who flew high in the sky and created the other gods and humanity.

In addition to presenting how birds, from cradle to coffin, permeated most aspects of Egyptian society, Bailleul-LeSuer will discuss the work she has conducted and is pursuing on a selection of bird mummies held in museum collections.

Using medical imaging and scientific analyses to complement findings from ancient texts and artifacts, her research aims at shedding some additional light on the phenomenon of Sacred Bird Cults, in which these mummies played a significant role. With her expertise in this unique field of study, Bailleul-LeSuer has edited the book, "Between Heaven and Earth, Birds in Ancient Egypt," which was published by the Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago in 2012.

The lecture begins at 7 p.m. in room T102 of the Conable Technology Building, is free and open to the public. The other upcoming Historical Horizons Lectures scheduled on the first Wednesday of each month during the Spring 2019 Semester include:

  • Wednesday, March 6: " 'Race' and the Dilemma of the New England Puritan: Intersections of Ideas and Identities" presented by Richard Bailey, Ph.D., associate professor of History at Canisius College and author of "Race and Redemption in Puritan New England" (Oxford 2014);
  • Wednesday, April 3: "The Shadow of Slavery: Black Women and Political Mobilization during Reconstruction" presented by Justin Behrend, Ph.D., associate professor of History, SUNY Geneseo and author of "Reconstructing Democracy: Grassroots Black Politics in the Deep South after the Civil War" (University of Georgia Press, 2015.);
  • Wednesday, May 1: "Military Campaigns of 1755 -- French and Indian War" presented by William Griffith, associate at the Gettysburg Foundation.
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