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What Do Archaeologists Think of ‘Tomb Raider’?

It’s fair to say that many archaeologists have a love-hate relationship with their fictional counterparts and with the way their profession is portrayed in popular culture. On the one hand, films and other works of fiction help perpetuate the trope of the “adventurer-archaeologist”, Indiana Jones-types who spend their lives sniffing out lost cities and ancient treasures with little (or no) regard for proper archaeological procedure. Not only do such tropes give the public ... [Continue Reading]

October 26, 2015 // 3 Comments

Pillagers of the Past and an Interview with Author Jordan Jacobs

For decades, Hollywood and other entertainment outlets have depicted archaeologists as globe-trotting treasure hunters with a thirst for adventure, a taste for shiny trinkets, and a flagrant disregard for the integrity and safety of the ancient sites they’re trespassing on. Lost cities are a staple plot point of your average archaeological adventure and encounters with the mystical and/or paranormal are almost a certainty. Despite the best efforts of professional archaeologists and ... [Continue Reading]

January 27, 2015 // 9 Comments

Article: Heroes, Mummies & Treasure: Near Eastern Archaeology in the Movies

Dr. Kevin McGeough’s article Heroes, Mummies & Treasure: Near Eastern Archaeology in the Movies examines the portrayal of Near Eastern archaeology in the movies and addresses the general public’s romantic view of archaeology as an adventurous – and often dangerous – occupation. He argues that archaeologists can better understand the public’s perception of archaeology and communicate archaeological knowledge more effectively if they confront these inaccurate, ... [Continue Reading]

May 26, 2013 // 6 Comments

Article: Romancing the Stones: Archaeology in Popular Cinema

In his article Romancing the Stones: Archaeology in Popular Cinema, historian Mark A. Hall looks at how archaeology and archaeologists are depicted in popular cinema and considers how the recurring themes of cultural appropriation, cultural imperialism, and emphasis on “treasured objects” create a somewhat skewed and negative view of the profession. Among the films examined are the original Indiana Jones trilogy, the Mummy film series, and, of course, the two Tomb Raider films. Ms ... [Continue Reading]

March 16, 2013 // 6 Comments