Press Release: Korea Archaeology Lectures at Harvard, Spring 2007

A series of lectures on Korean archaeology was held at Harvard University during the spring semester of 2007. The “Harvard University East Asian Archaeology Seminar: Lectures on Korean Archaeology” was organized by the Early Korea Project at the Korea Institute, Harvard University and funded by the Academy of Korean Studies, featured presentations by four prominent archaeologists from Korea and was organized to provide an introduction to Korean archaeology at Harvard and to promote further studies on early Korean history and archaeology in the English language.   The lectures were held at the Peabody Museum, Harvard University.

Presented by specialists from Korea, the lecture topics ranged from changes in Silla tomb structure (Kang Bong Won, Gyeongju University Museum) and the development of ceramic technologies in Korea (Choi Jongtaik, Korea University) to the introduction of rice culture and bronze metallurgy (Pak Yangjin, Chungnam National University) and the development of complex societies in southwestern Korea (Kim Gyongtaek, Korean National University of Cultural Heritage). These lectures provided attendees, primarily archaeology students and faculty from Harvard and the surrounding region, with an introduction to some of the major themes in Korean archaeology today. The lectures were well-attended and have generated considerable interest in Korean archaeology among both specialists and non-specialists in North America.

The guest lecturers also met with faculty and students at Boston University to share their research and to discuss plans to create a bibliographical database for publications on Korean archaeology. This database will be integrated with a master database, currently being developed at the International Center for East Asian Archaeology and Cultural History, which will encompass archaeological publications in all East Asian languages.

The Spring lecture series was successful both in providing an introduction to current archaeological scholarship in Korea in the English language and in establishing professional connections for the further development of Korean archaeological studies in English. Plans are underway to continue the lecture series into the Fall semester at Harvard and to expand the scope of archaeology-based studies of Korea in North America.

The Korean archaeology lecture series was organized by Dr. Mark E. Byington, director of the Early Korea Project, and was made possible by a generous grant from the Academy of Korean Studies. Support for the Early Korea Project is provided by the Korea Foundation and the Academy of Korean Studies.

2007 Seminar Series Presenters