The Fall 2016 issue

Welcome to the latest issue of Mar Shiprim!

Mar Shiprim is saying goodbye to its editor Karin Beumer, who has managed the website ever since its first publication in 2013. Karin is to be warmly thanked for her work on Mar Shiprim over the last three years, and we hope that you will join us in wishing her the best of luck in future endeavours. Replacing Karin as the new editor of Mar Shiprim is Sophus Helle, a student of Assyriology who recently finished his MA at the University of Copenhagen. As it happens, Sophus already submitted to a round of personal questions for ‘In the Spotlight’ last year, and not much has changed since.

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RAI 2016

We would like to thank the organizing committee of this year’s RAI, who toiled hard to make the 2016 Rencontre a success!

The Rencontre Assyriologique Internationale took place in Philadelphia this year, as a sort of distinguished prelude to the following week’s Democratic National Convention. We had our own share of challenges to deal with, as the city of Philadelphia was hit by both soaring temperatures and a breakdown in public transportation in the week ahead of the Rencontre. Undeterred, the organizers of this year’s Rencontre, Grant Frame, Josh Jeffers, Holly Pittman, Lauren Ristvet, Steve Tinney, and Richard Zettler, managed to turn it into the success we all expected it to be.

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In the Spotlight: University of Chicago

This issue the spotlight falls on the University of Chicago! Representing the university are Dr. Susanne Paulus and Andy Wilent, who have very kindly agreed to answer our questions.

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In Popular Culture: Mathieu Ossendrijver

In this issue we are introducing some new themes to the newsletter. Besides the already existing themes ‘In the Spotlight’ and ‘In the Field’, Mar Shiprim will now also include a recurring theme entitled ‘In Popular Culture’, about the various ways in which assyriological and archeological scholarship has been communicated to a larger audience.

We begin this new recurring theme with an an interview with Mathieu Ossendrijver, whose article in Science in January 2016 led to a huge wave of popular interest.

But how does one communicate the technicalities of Late Babylonian astronomy, when many of the journalists do not know what cuneiform is? Luckily, Ossendrijver was happy to share his experiences with us!

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In the Field: Tell Abu Tbeirah

For this issue, Franco D’Agostino and Licia Romano bring us the latest news from the field at Tell Abu Tbeirah, where they are uncovering new evidence of the transition from the Early Dynastic to the Akkadian period in southern Mesopotamia.

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Congratulations! To Jaafar Jotheri

In this issue we are introducing some new themes to the newsletter. One of these new themes is called Congratulations. In each issue we will bring you the news of an assyriologist or archeologist who has, for example, published their first book, received an award, or, as is the case this time, defended their PhD!

For our first installment of this new recurring theme, we would like to congratulate Dr. Jaafar Jotheri on obtaining his PhD degree in Geoarchaeology from Durham University last month.

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Congratulations! The IAA Prize 2016

Courtesy of Giacomo Benati.It is our pleasure to congratulate the two winners of the IAA Prize, Dr. Giacomo Benati and Dr. Andrew Knapp!

The IAA Prize is awarded annually for the best first article written after the PhD in Assyriology or Mesopotamian archaeology. The first place winner receives a stipend of 1000€, while the runner-up winner receives one of 250€. The two winners are announced each year at the General Meeting of the IAA.

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Recent publications: Spring and summer 2016

Culled from the Agade mailing list for your convenience, here is a list of publications in the fields of Assyriology and Mesopotamian Archeology so far in 2016. Please do write to us if we have overlooked a publication, or if anything should be added to the list!

Many thanks are due to Carlos Langa-Morales, Frank Simons and Elyze de Ridder-Zomer for their help in composing the list!

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A New Administrator

Some of you may have noticed that for a while now, a different person than before has been aswering your IAA related questions. The reason for this is that Karin Beumer, who has been the IAA administrator for the past four years, has resigned because of a busy schedule. As of January 2016, the new IAA administrator is Erwin Dijkstra, a master student from the University of Leiden. He has been working hard to take over all of the administrative tasks of the IAA, and if you have any questions, you are welcome to contact him!

About Philadelphia

Only a few days to go, and the 62nd Rencontre Assyriologique Internationale will take place in Philadelphia, USA. From July 11th through July 15th, Philadelphia will be taken over by assyriologists from all over the world. The University of Pennsylvania and the University of  Pennsylvania Museum opf Archaeology and Anthropology will be our hosts this edition. This year’s theme will be ‘UR in the Twenty-First Century’, with a special sub-theme to address the ongoing disaster in Syria. The members of this years organizing committee are: Grant Frame, Joshua Jeffers, Holly Pittman, Lauren Ristvet, Steve Tinney, and Richard Zettler.

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