UA Blog

Category Spotlight: Classical Studies and Archaeology

 “I believe that the more you know about the past, the better you are prepared for the future"        ~ Theodore Roosevelt

The Classical Studies and Archaeology category was introduced in 2014. This category is for students of Archaeology and Classical Studies, including students of Ancient History, Ancient Civilisations, Celtic Studies etc. Students of History who wish to submit a paper on Ancient History, should also submit to this category. Entrants must submit an abstract of between 100-300 words long.

 Last year's winner in the category was Melanie Hechenberger from Monash University, with a paper entitled : The Origin Of Writing In Egypt: Administrative Or Ceremonial? 

The paper concentrates on the long-standing debate over the origin of writing in Ancient Egypt. The pivotal question at the centre of this debate is " Which theme is the more likely stimulus for the creation of writing?" In Melanie's abstract, she explains,

"In This Paper, I Examine Both Branches Of Debate With The Design Of Assembling The Arguments In One Place Of Reference As Well As Determining Which Theory Is The Most Plausible Explanation For The Origin Of Writing Through A Comparative Analysis Of The Arguments With Reference To The Burial Context In Which The Source Material Is Found."

According to the judges, Melanie's submission is:

"A wonderful piece which deals with a very complex issue showcasing the quality of an already mature scholar."

 The 2016 winning paper was submitted by Alicia Núñez García from the University of Edinburgh. The paper named: Modern appropriation of past material culture: fostering ‘soft’ nationalisms in Mediterranean Europe through meaning, memory, and identity, raised the question "What is the purpose of past material culture appropriation as national and regional images in the 21st century and how could archaeology raise awareness of this phenomenon? "

Since becoming a Global Winner at the Undergraduate Awards, Alicia graduated with a first-class honours in Ancient Mediterranean Civilisations. She has undergone diverse archaeological fieldwork throughout Europe ranging from the Mesolithic to postmedieval times. She has also completed a community archaeology placement with Archaeology Scotland and attended a course on Greek archaeology with the British School at Athens.

She is currently pursuing a postgraduate MA in Experimental Archaeology at the University of Exeter, Alicia is hoping to integrate this hands-on approach with her research interests in outreach, public archaeology and theoretical issues – including symmetrical theory, questions of materiality, and queer and feminist theory. Alicia is also an avid practicer of Capoeira, an aspiring writer and an enthusiast of idealism.

We are particularly excited to see the incoming submissions to the 2018 Programme because of the top-quality research being completed by undergraduate students in this field. If you would like to find out how to submit click here.

If you would like to read any of the Global Winners papers or Highly Commended papers go to The Undergraduate Awards Library.