Cornell University

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Connectivity and the Late Antique Transformation: the View from the Marzamemi “Church Wreck”

Thursday, April 26, 2018 at 4:30pm

Justin Leidwanger’s research and fieldwork focus primarily on the role of maritime networks in structuring Roman socioeconomic life. These interests lead him to spend as much time in, as around, the waters of the Mediterranean, where his fieldwork explores the shipwrecks and ports that provide primary archaeological evidence for the modes and mechanisms of communication and exchange between the Hellenistic era and Late Antiquity. In 2012, he initiated the Marzamemi Maritime Heritage Project in southeast Sicily, which combines survey and excavation with maritime heritage education and museum and tourism development. Since 2013, the focus has been on excavation, management, reconstruction, and research related to the famous 6th-c. Marzamemi “church wreck”, which sank while carrying a massive cargo that included prefabricated architectural and decorative elements. Since 2011, he has co-directed annual multidisciplinary maritime landscape investigations in the Archaic through late Roman harbors of Burgaz, off the Datça peninsula in southwest Turkey, with Elizabeth S. Greene (Brock University) and Numan Tuna (Middle East Technical University). Prior to this, he directed annual surveys off the coast of southern Cyprus (2003-2009). For nearly a decade, he has been involved in issues of ethical collaborative stewardship, diverse public engagement, and innovative strategies for incorporating underwater cultural heritage into economic and coastal development. On these topics, he has co-authored a number of recent articles and co-organized a series of international workshops and conferences with the Penn Cultural Heritage Center, where he is active as a Fellow. In the Classics Department, he teaches courses and advises students on topics in Roman archaeology, trade and the ancient economy, Mediterranean seafaring, ceramic production and exchange, networks and connectivity, Greco-Roman architecture and engineering, and archaeological ethics. As faculty at the Stanford Archaeology Center, his lab serves as a research base for field projects as well as a center for digital modeling (GIS, photogrammetry, 3D scanning, and network analysis) and pottery analysis (petrography and pXRF).

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Linda Brown

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Justin Leidwanger

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Stanford Univerity

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