21 May 2024 - 22 May 2024

Serpiano (TI)

Institute of Ancient History, University of Basel

Congress / Conference / Symposium

International Conference: Egypt at the Crossroads: People, Products, and Pathogens

International Conference organised by the SNSF-Project "The Roman Egypt Laboratory: Climate Change, Societal Transformations, and the Transition to Late Antiquity" – Anmeldung erbeten unter sabine.huebner@unibas.ch


Since ancient times, Egypt has served as a hub for the passage of goods and people, connecting different empires and regions. Trade during the Roman era expanded towards the south, crossing the Nile and moving eastwards from the ports on the Red Sea coast, establishing trade relationships with central and eastern Africa, as well as southern Arabia and Asia. In addition, Egypt was and still is at the intersection of different climatic zones and the Nile, with its annually fluctuating floods making agriculture possible in the middle of the desert, is dominated by the East African monsoon. This conference will investigate aspects that stimulated Roman Egypt’s progression to regional nexus and economic giant, the ways in which that evolution contributed to its Middle Imperial deterioration and eventual annexation in the later third century CE, and how this all reshaped the region for late antiquity. We invited historians, archaeologists, papyrologists, epidemiologists, and palaeoclimatologists to discuss topics that evaluate how a well-connected Egypt affected (for better or worse) societies within the region itself, as well as those linked to it in the Mediterranean, East Africa, Arabia, and South Asia.

Confirmed speakers include Brenda Baker (Arizona), Sara Baldin (Basel), Francois Blondel (Geneva), Christophe Corona (CNRS), Doaa Elalfy (Basel), Colin Elliot (Indiana), Yehia Gad (Cairo), Kyle Harper (Oklahoma), Marcel Keller (Bern), Mohamed Kenawi (Leicester), Laurianne Lequette (Paris), Irene Soto Marín (Harvard), Brandon McDonald (Basel), Timothy Newfield (Georgetown), Verena Schünemann (Basel), Jeremy Simmons (Maryland), Philip Slavin (Stirling), Markus Stoffel (Geneva) and Edward Tang (Oxford).

In order to register for the conference (Zoom or in person), please email sabine.huebner@clutterunibas.ch.

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