By ach

This blog has been set up to chart the activities and research findings of two projects led by Anne Haour, an archaeologist from the Sainsbury Research Unit at the University of East Anglia in the United Kingdom.

One project, funded by the European Research Council, is called Crossroads of empires: archaeology, material culture and socio-political relationships in West Africa, running January 2011 to December 2015. This involves a team of archaeologists, historians and anthropologists who will be studying the Niger Valley where it borders Niger and Bénin, carrying out new excavations and research in order to shed light on the people who inhabited the area in the past 1500 years. We are hoping to find evidence of the activities of skilled craftspeople such as potters, blacksmiths and dyers, and to explore how their work and daily life were affected by the polities that occupied this landscape in the last two millennia.

The other project, funded by the Leverhulme Trust, is called Cowrie shells: an early global commodity, running April 2015 to September 2018. The team brings together expertise in African archaeology, marine biology, museology and Maldivian heritage to shed light on a famous shell, the money cowrie; it served as currency, ritual object and ornament across the world for millennia, and most especially in medieval times in the Maldive Islands of the Indian Ocean and the Sahelian regions of West Africa.

Log in regularly, or sign up for email updates, to hear about our findings and to get a glimpse into these fascinating pasts.

The opinions cited here are personal and in no way represent any official policy of UEA, the funders, or any other organisation!


5 Responses to “About this blog”


  1. July 3, 2015 at 00:35

    Hi There!

    Nice Blog, I am an Archaeology student from UCD Ireland.

    Perhaps you would like to have a look at my blog too?

    Archaeofox.wordpress.com

    Thanks,

    Stephen

  2. 2 Teresa Franco
    October 8, 2015 at 18:01

    Hi, I tried to click the like button, but it has to have a WorldPress account. So, here is my LIKE click. It is good to learn about the cowrie shells project you are developing. Good luck with it.

  3. 3 Catherine LEFEVRE
    October 18, 2016 at 16:55

    Hi ! I am very happy to read about African archaeology and recent discoveries. I studied West African medieval History at the Sorbonne (Paris) in 1969-71 , with Raymond Mauny who had been director of IFAN (Dakar), and he had worked with Théodore Monod. That is a long time ago and I am very interested in what historians, etc have discovered since then !
    Unluckily, I haven’t worked on African history later : I was a History teacher in “lycées”, and I worked in Algeria (Saïda) from 1971 to 1980 as a teacher, and I often travelled in the Sahara.
    I have no site or blog, and my English is not perfect, but I am looking forward to reading about your researches and findings here ! Thank you !


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About this blog

This blog has been set up to chart the activities and research findings of two projects led by Anne Haour, an archaeologist from the Sainsbury Research Unit at the University of East Anglia, United Kingdom.

The first project, called Crossroads, brings together a team of archaeologists, historians and anthropologists studying the Niger Valley where it borders Niger and Bénin (West Africa). We are hoping to shed more light on the people that inhabited the area in the past 1500 years and to understand how population movements and craft techniques shaped the area's past.

The second project, called Cowries, examines the money cowrie, a shell which served as currency, ritual object and ornament across the world for millennia, and in medieval times most especially in the Maldive Islands of the Indian Ocean and the Sahelian regions of West Africa. We hope to understand how this shell was sourced and used in those two areas.

These investigations are funded by the European Research Council as part of the Starting Independent Researcher Programme (Seventh Framework Programme – FP7) and by the Leverhulme Trust as a Research Project Grant. The opinions posted here are however Anne Haour's own!

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