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B.A. Honours in Archaeology, Department of Archaeology and Classical Studies, Wilfrid Laurier University (2005)
M.A. in Classical and Near Eastern Archaeology, Department of Classical, Near Eastern, and Religious Studies, UBC (2009)
Certificate in Multimedia and Web Development, UBC (2016)
Ph.D. in Classics, Department of Classics, Stanford University (2016)
Lecturer in Classics and Ancient History, University of New England, Australia (2018-2020)
IEMA Postdoctoral Scholar, Institute for European and Mediterranean Archaeology, SUNY-Buffalo (2017-2018)
Lora Bryning Redford Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Puget Sound (2016-2017)
- Greek (Language)
- Greek Studies
- Archaeology and Material Culture
- Culture and Identity
In general, my research engages long-term history and the textual and material datasets of the ancient Mediterranean world with questions concerning the emergence of social complexity, political change, and economic development. I address these questions through interdisciplinary means. On one hand, my work has aimed to expand the geographical and cultural boundaries of the “Classical world” to encompass a much broader landscape of cultural and ethnic groups, and to position this cross-cultural complexity and interconnectivity as one of the key drivers of ancient Mediterranean history. On the other hand, I have endeavoured to incorporate new types of methodologies to investigating these areas. My work has incorporated hard sciences, social sciences, and digital humanities and data sciences, reflected particularly through my two edited volumes.
Monograph Project: The Queen of Heaven and a Goddess for All the People: Religion and Rulership in Archaic Greece
My current monograph project, built upon a revision of my 2016 PhD dissertation, argues for a long-term historical and large-scale geographical approach to understanding how the Greeks in the Iron Age interfaced with and transformed longstanding ideologies of rulership that had emerged over the course of the Bronze Age in the eastern Mediterranean and Near East. This research adds a crucial new dimension to our understanding of the rise of the Greek city-state, or polis, namely by explaining how Greek communities in the period between ca. 550 and 350 BCE came to eschew, through myth and ritual, one-man rule in favour of more egalitarian governments. This research was supported by the Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation, the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, Stanford University, the American Council of Learned Societies, and the Andrew Mellon Foundation.
Interdisciplinary Approaches to Migration and Mobility
My interests in migration, developed over my 2017-2018 postdoctoral fellowship at SUNY-Buffalo, have resulted in an edited volume, Homo Migrans: Modelling Mobility and Migration in Human History. This volume argues for the need to understand human history through migration and mobility and not through discrete cultures. It investigates the long and problematic engagement of archaeology with the study of “cultural groups” and capitalizes on recent advancements in genetics and other hard sciences, now referred to as the Third Science Revolution in archaeology (Kristiansen 2014). I continue to build a research profile that includes a historiography of migration studies in archaeology over the nineteenth and twentieth centuries as a means to articulate the relationship between academic studies of migration and broader public and political sentiments towards migrants. You can read more of this trajectory here: https://peoplingthepast.com/2022/04/01/blog-post-56-lessons-from-the-past-archaeology-and-migration-with-megan-daniels/
I retain longstanding interests in Phoenician/Punic culture as well. I have published on the archaeology and history of the Phoenicians in North Africa and Spain, including a 2017 chapter for an edited volume for Cambridge University Press and a chapter for an Oxford University Press handbook. I have also served as a staff member and ceramic analyst on an international archaeological project in Tunisia, the Zita Project, which includes excavation of a Punic sanctuary, and has resulted in joint authored peer-reviewed articles, both published and currently under review.
Social Sciences and Data Sciences Approaches to Ancient Religion
I am also keen on incorporating novel methodological approaches to investigating topics traditionally under the purview of the humanities, namely ancient religion, through the integration of models from the social sciences and digital and data science methodologies. Outputs in this area include a co-edited volume in press for Lockwood Press, Data Science, Human Science, and Ancient Gods, which incorporates papers from two co-organized conference sessions, held in concurrent years (2017, 2018) at the Archaeological Institute of America and Society for Classical Studies Joint Annual Meeting. Following my current monograph project, my next project focuses on digital and data science approaches to updating and re-analyzing legacy data from excavations of Iron Age/Archaic eastern Mediterranean sanctuaries to model and articulate the socio-economic roles of religion in this period. The preliminary stage of this project has recently been been funded by a SSHRCC Insight Development Grant, “Re-Orienting ‘Orientalizing’: Intercultural Iconographies of the Mediterranean Iron Age”.
Archaeological Fieldwork and Ceramic Analysis
Finally, I have worked on numerous excavations for the past 15+ years, as both a field archaeologist and ceramics analyst. I started my career as an archaeologist for Parks Canada, assisting with archaeological mitigation and analysis at numerous sites throughout southern Ontario. I have also excavated in Greece (Azoria, Crete; Lefkandi-Xeropolis, Euboea; Diakofti, Kythera; Lecheion Harbour, Corinth; Stymphalos, Arcadia; and the Athenian Agora); Italy (Sant’Omobono, Rome); Bermuda (Port Royal Golf Course and the Cocoon Site); Macedonia (Herakleia Lyncestis); Turkey (Burgaz Harbours); and Tunisia (the Zita Project, Zarzis). I have an ongoing interest in ceramic analysis, and am currently working on finishing a catalogue of Hellenistic pottery from the acropolis excavations at Stymphalos. I have also worked as a ceramic analyst on the Burgaz Harbours Project, Turkey; the Zita Project, Tunisia; and the Howard Comfort Summer Program in Roman Pottery at the American Academy in Rome.
Daniels, M. (ed.) 2022. Homo Migrans: Modeling Mobility and Migration in Human History. IEMA Distinguished Monograph Series. Albany: SUNY Press.
(In press), Blakely, S. and M. Daniels (eds.) Data Science, Human Science, and Ancient Gods: Conversations in Theory and Method. SAMR Series. Atlanta: Lockwood Press.
Articles and Chapters:
Daniels, M. 2023. “Celebrating Death at the Sanctuary of Orthia: A Prothesis Scene, the Ivory Corpus, and Ritual Landscapes in the Seventh Century” Annual of the British School at Athens 118.
Daniels, M. J. and C. L. Johnston. 2022. “Monumentalization and Placemaking: From the Athenian Acropolis to Modern Spaces.” In Visualizing Objects, Places, and Spaces: A Digital Project Handbook, edited by B. Fischer and H. Jacobs. https://doi.org/10.21428/
Daniels, M. 2022. “Hērōs invictus and pācātor orbis: Hercules as a War God for Roman Emperors.” In Religion and Classical Warfare: The Roman Empire, edited by M. Dillon and C. Matthew, 94-126. Yorkshire and Philadelphia: Pen & Sword.
Daniels, M. “‘Orientalizing’ Networks and the Nude Standing Female: Synchronic and Diachronic Dimensions of Ideology Transfer.” In Networks and the Spread of Ideas in the Past: Strong Ties, Innovation and Knowledge Exchange, edited by A. Collar, 31-78. London: Routledge.
Daniels, M. 2022. “Movement as a Constant? Envisioning a Migration-Centered Worldview of Human History.” In Homo Migrans: Modelling Migration and Mobility in Human History, edited by M. Daniels, 1-28. Albany: SUNY Press.
Daniels, M. 2021. “Heracles and Melqart.” The Oxford Handbook to Heracles, edited by D. Ogden, 464-488. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Kaufman, B., H. Barnard, A. Drine, R. Khedher, A. Farahani, S. Ben-Tahar, E. Jerray, B. N. Damiata, M. Daniels, J. Cerezo-Román, T. Fenn, and V. Moses. 2021. “Quantifying Surplus and Sustainability in the Archaeological Record: Survey and Excavations at the Carthaginian/Roman Urban Mound of Zita, Tripolitania (Tunisia).” Current Anthropology 62.4: 484-497.
Moses, V., B. Kaufman, A. Drine, H. Barnard, S. Ben Tahar, E. Jerray, and M. Daniels. 2019. “Evidence for Meat Consumption during the Punic to Roman Colonial Transition at Zita (2nd Century BCE-2nd Century CE).” International Journal of Osteoarchaeology 29.4: 549-559. https://doi.org/10.1002/oa.
Daniels, M. 2018. “Aphrodite Pandemos at Naukratis Revisited: The Goddess and Her Civic Function in the Context of an Archaic Emporion.” Journal of Greek Archaeology 3: 165-201.
Daniels, M. 2017. “Annexing a Shared Past: Roman Appropriations of Hercules-Melqart in the Conquest of Hispania.” In Rome, Empire of Plunder: The Dynamics of Cultural Appropriation, edited by M. Loar, C. MacDonald, and D. Padilla-Peralta, 237-260. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Higgins, S. C. and M. Daniels. 2015. “Alternative Academics: Moving Beyond the Academy.” Forum: Investigating the Future, Journal of Eastern Mediterranean Archaeology and Heritage Studies 3.3: 238-246.
Daniels, M. 2014. “Sacred Exchange: The Religious Institutions of Emporia in the Mediterranean World of the Later Iron Age.” In Urban Dreams and Realities in Antiquity: Remains and Representations of the Ancient City, edited by A. Kemezis, 297-327. Leiden: Brill.
Daniels, M. 2022. “Beyond East and West: Conceptions of Naukratis.” Peopling the Past (Blog).
Daniels, M. 2022. “The Sanctuary of Artemis Orthia (Sparta).” Database of Religious History. University of British Columbia.
Daniels, M. 2022. “Lessons from the Past: Archaeology and Migration.” Peopling the Past (Blog).
Daniels, M. 2021. “Music Despite Everything: Jack Gilbert’s A Brief for the Defense.” In Spaces of Affect and Change: Pierre Elliot Trudeau Foundation Alumni Newsletter, edited by S. Thériault and L. García Zarranz.
Daniels, M. 2021. “Archaic Spartan Cults.” Database of Religious History. University of British Columbia. 10.14288/1.0398122
Daniels, M. 2020. “‘To Make Sacred’: Human Sacrifice in the Ancient World.” Peopling the Past (Blog).
Daniels, M. 2020. “The Phoenicians.” Peopling the Past (Video).
Daniels, M. 2020. “Why Did People Dedicate Images of Nude Females in the Past? Considering Meaning and Intent Behind the Images.” Peopling the Past (Blog).
Daniels, M. 2017. “Black Athena, 30 Years On: Why Bernal Still Matters to Classics.” Eidolon.
Aspects of Network Theory: Review of Lin Foxhall (ed.) Interrogating Networks. Investigating Networks of Knowledge in Antiquity. Pp. x + 134, figs, ills, maps. Oxford and Philadelphia: Oxbow Books, 2021. Paper, £16.95. ISBN: 978-1-78925-627-7. Classical Review. doi:10.1017/S0009840X22001676.
Review of Guy Middleton, Collapse and Transformation: the late Bronze Age to early Iron Age in the Aegean. Oxford: Oxbow Books, 2020. Pp. xii, 258. ISBN 9781789254259 $80.00. American Antiquity. https://doi.org/10.1017/aaq.
Review of Irene Lemos, Athéna Tsingarida, Beyond the polis: rituals, rites and cults in early and archaic Greece (12th-6th centuries BC). Études d’archéologie, 15. Bruxelles: CReA-Patrimoine, 2019. Pp. 302 ISBN 9782960202922. BMCR 2021.09.36.
Review of Bettany Hughes, Venus and Aphrodite: a biography of desire. New York: Basic Books, 2020. Pp. v, 188. ISBN 9781541674233. $26.00. BMCR 2021.07.46.
Review of Lucas, Jason, Carrie Ann Murray, and Sara Owen, eds. Greek Colonization in Local Contexts: Case Studies in Colonial Interactions. Pp. vi + 241. Oxbow Books, Oxford 2019. American Journal of Archaeology 124.4.
Review of Jeffrey P. Emanuel. Black ships and sea raiders: the late bronze and early iron age context of Odysseus’ Second Cretan Lie. Greek Studies: Interdisciplinary Approaches. Lanham, MD: Lexington Books, 2017. BMCR 2018.10.43.
Review of Bonnet, Corinne and Laurent Bricault. Quand les dieux voyagent: cultes et mythes en mouvement dans l’espace méditerranéen antique. Histoire des religions. Genève: Labor et Fides, 2016. BMCR 2017.6.18.
- Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council Insight Development Grant, “Re-Orienting ‘Orientalizing’: Intercultural Iconographies of the Mediterranean Iron Age” (430-2022-00476), 2022-2024
- Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council Connections Grant, “Presenting the Past: Responsible Scholarship and Ancient Mediterranean History”, with M. Funke, C. A. M. Gardner, S. C. Higgins, C. L. Johnston, and C. M. Laferrière, 2022-2023
- University of New England Early Career Researcher Award for pilot project: “Of Temples and Tomes: Analyzing Trends in Votive Deposition and Social Change in the Iron Age Eastern Mediterranean (900-500 BCE)”, 2019
- ACLS/Mellon Foundation Dissertation Completion Fellowship, 2015-2016
- Trudeau Scholar, Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation, 2012-2016
- Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council Doctoral Fellowship, 2010-2014
- Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council Canada Graduate Scholarship, 2007-2008
- Elaine Fantham Public Scholarship Award, Classical Association of Canada (with V. Austen, M. Funke, C. A. M. Gardner, S. C. Higgins, C. L. Johnston, and C. M. Laferrière), 2022
- Women’s Classical Caucus Public Scholarship Award, Society for Classical Studies (with M. Funke, C. A. M. Gardner, S. C. Higgins, C. L. Johnston, and C. M. Laferrière), 2021
- Honourable Mention, Emerging Open Scholarship Award, Canadian Social Knowledge Institute (with M. Funke, C. A. M. Gardner, S. C. Higgins, C. L. Johnston, and C. M. Laferrière), 2021
I am interested in supervising students in all aspects of Greek art/archaeology from the Bronze Age to the Hellenistic Period. My main interests centre on cross-cultural interaction through religion, trade, and shared ideologies between Greece, western Asia, and Egypt in the Bronze and Iron Ages, and the examination of these relationships through both texts and material culture. I am currently developing further research areas in the study of ancient mobility and migration and digital/data science approaches to the ancient world. Finally, I retain longstanding interests in Phoenician/Punic culture, and am happy to talk about supervision or co-supervision in these areas.
Previously supervised M.A. projects
A. Arrezzolo, University of New England: “The Art of Physical Exaggeration in Ptolemaic Iconography”B. Arthur, University of New England: “Nineteenth and Twentieth Dynasty Egypt and the Pentapolis: The extent of Sherden and Peleset/Philistine migration, re-settlement and integration during the Ramesside”B. Patford, University of New England: “Psychological Meaning from the Mythology and Iconography of Horus the Behdetite”
Previously supervised Honours theses
A. Cowan, University of New England: “Athena: Gender and Influence in Archaic and Classical Greek Mythology”