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The International Program’s blog

Four and a Half Weeks at Megiddo – A Summer’s Summary 2014

Posted by on Aug 25, 2014

Four and a Half Weeks at Megiddo – A Summer’s Summary 2014

After four and a half weeks at Megiddo, my time here has sadly come to an end; but the memories and the experiences from the excavation will be treasured forever.  This being my first excavation ever, I was uncertain of what to expect. I figured that since I enjoy both the outdoors and archaeology – the excavation will be fun. However, it really was so much more than I could ever have imagined.  There were of course sacrifices that had to be made such as waking up very early and the intense physical labour. These however added to the experience, and in hindsight were even very enjoyable...

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My Top 5 Archaeological Related Experiences at TAU

Posted by on Aug 14, 2014

My Top 5 Archaeological Related Experiences at TAU

It’s been almost two years since I arrived in Tel Aviv in order to pursue an MA in Archaeology of Ancient Near Eastern Cultures. During this time I have trekked near and far throughout Israel, the Middle East, and Europe in pursuit of archaeological knowledge and adventure.  I must admit I am incredibly jealous of those of you who grew up in countries with a documented history older than a handful of centuries. Eastern and Western Europe and the Middle East have been like historical and archaeological playgrounds for me in the past two years and it is hard to choose only five things I’ve...

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Second Week at the Megiddo Excavation – Summer of 2014

Posted by on Jul 24, 2014

Second Week at the Megiddo Excavation – Summer of 2014

In the last post my classmate, Laura, shared experiences from the first week at the Megiddo excavation. The first week involved a lot of cleaning and setting up so in terms of archaeology it wasn’t too groundbreaking. However, during the second week, more interesting finds started to reveal themselves in every area of the Tel.    Working in area H  First things first, I suppose that a small introduction to my area is in order. I work in the area H of Tel Megiddo. Legend has it that both professor Oded Lipschits and professor Chris Rollston excavated this area in the past. In fact,...

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First Week at Megiddo – Summer of 2014

Posted by on Jul 17, 2014

First Week at Megiddo – Summer of 2014

My name is Laura Lilla Farkas, and I am student from Hungary currently living in Israel.  As a part of the International M.A. program in Archaeology at Tel Aviv University I have decided to join the excavation in Megiddo. The first week here at the excavation was both exciting and exhausting, and it has been nice to meet people from all over the world who decided to participate in the excavation. So far this excavation has given me the opportunity to learn from many experts from various sub-fields of archaeology. We even got a private personalized tour of the Tel from the world renowned...

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What to Expect on the Lautenschläger Azekah Expedition?

Posted by on Mar 20, 2014

What to Expect on the Lautenschläger Azekah Expedition?

Digging season is only a few months away! As excitment and preparations for the third excavation season at Azekah are well felt all around here at TAU, I thought I’d share with you, dear excavators and digging enthusiasts, what to expect from the Lautenschläger Azekah Expedition, based on my experience from last year’s dig. So get your trowel ready… And let’s go! Good morning! 4:00 A.M. wake-up calls are standard on any archaeological excavation where the late afternoon temperatures would find you in a puddle on the floor of the square you are digging. Better to...

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Behind the Scenes: an Inteview with Dr. Alexander Fantalkin of the International MA in Archaeology Program

Posted by on Dec 25, 2013

Behind the Scenes: an Inteview with Dr. Alexander Fantalkin of the International MA in Archaeology Program

 I recently sat with Dr. Alexander Fantalkin, a lecturer at Tel Aviv University, and our Pottery Typologies professor, to discuss his work in the Archaeology Department, and to get some expert advice to archaeology students. Alex, who did his BA, MA, and PhD at TAU along with additional training and research at King’s College in London, the American School of Classical Studies in Athens, and his post-doctorate in Berlin, specializes in the nature of connections between the ancient Levantine, Aegean, and Egyptian cultural spheres during the Iron Age. Alex’s projects often pursue...

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Jerusalem from the Past – A Day Out to the Exciting Excavations of the City of David and Ramat Rachel

Posted by on Aug 25, 2013

Jerusalem from the Past – A Day Out to the Exciting Excavations of the City of David and Ramat Rachel

In the archaeological world there are debates as grand and as historical as the sites they dispute. It is of little surprise that Jerusalem has caused a few differences of opinion in the last few centuries, as it is the center of many historical reconstructions based upon biblical literature. Here, one can find a large number of excavations all looking for evidence concerning the shape, the size, and the people of ancient Jerusalem in the past 4,000 years. We adventured out to see what’s coming out of the ground at new excavations, hear the debates about the old, and find out what we can...

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Behind the Scenes: an Inteview with an International MA in Archaeology Student

Posted by on May 27, 2013

Behind the Scenes: an Inteview with an International MA in Archaeology Student

One of the greatest parts of the college experience is the people you meet and the friends you make, and that is even truer when you are studying abroad. The International Master’s Program is great in that it allows us to meet and work with students from around the world. This month I thought it would be interesting to let you meet someone else from the program. Meet Sabine, a first year MA student from Germany.   What other schooling have you done before this Master’s Program, Sabine? I went to Heidelberg University and did my diplom in theology. A diplom is a combined...

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Out and About: an Archaeological Tour to Tel Dan and Hazor

Posted by on May 16, 2013

Out and About: an Archaeological Tour to Tel Dan and Hazor

  A couple of weeks ago we went on our first archaeological tour of the second semester.   Our first stop was Tel Dan, a mere 3 hour bus ride from campus at the northern tip of Israel, and the second stop was the ancient city of Hatzor.   During the drive our tour guide, Ph.D. student Ido Koch, explained interesting facts about the landscape and how it changed as we drove and pointed out several important locations in the history of the land as we passed them. Tel Dan Despite having traveled through much of Israel over the past six months I was unprepared for what Tel Dan had...

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Putting Down the Trowel and Picking up Matzoh: Pesach for an Archaeologist

Posted by on Apr 18, 2013

Putting Down the Trowel and Picking up Matzoh: Pesach for an Archaeologist

I was reluctant to go. When our social program coordinator, offered up the opportunity to spend Pesach (Passover) Seder at an Israeli family’s home it took some convincing.   I suspected I would spend the evening intruding on a family while they shared this special night together and struggling to pick up every 10th word of their fast-paced Hebrew. Upon hearing my plans, almost every Israeli I knew gave me the most exaggerated look of pity, and it started to feel like a sin that I wasn’t about to share the evening feasting with someone. I began to regret not jumping on the...

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Outside the Classroom: Revisiting the Archaeological Tours of the Fall Semester

Posted by on Apr 8, 2013

Outside the Classroom: Revisiting the Archaeological Tours of the Fall Semester

Whoever told you graduate school entailed sitting in the library and reading until your eyes crossed was… well, only partly right. If your interests happen to lie in the realm of archaeology of the ancient Near East, one of the greatest advantages to studying in Israel is the proximity of your spot in the library to the archaeological sites you’ve been reading up on. During our fall semester, my fellow peers and I visited more than 10 sites excavated by the university over the past few decades.Often, the men and women who directed these excavations headed the tours, adding another...

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First Semester at TAU: Highlights from the International MA Program

Posted by on Apr 4, 2013

First Semester at TAU: Highlights from the International MA Program

T.A.U., or as the students call it, Tau, is supposed to stand for Tel Aviv University, but that is a misnomer. The campus is actually just north of Tel Aviv, in Ramat Aviv, and after a semester here I believe it more accurately stands for The Adventure University. My journey began when I chose to do my undergrad in anthropology, but job hunting with a just a B.A. in that field is like a “Mission: Impossible”. For that reason continuing my education with an M.A. was the only reasonable option. I was lucky and found the International Program website while researching Tel Megiddo, one of...

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Digging at Megiddo – an Experience of a Lifetime

Posted by on Aug 5, 2012

Digging at Megiddo – an Experience of a Lifetime

It has always been a dream of mine to have the pleasure and the ability to get involved in an excavation in Israel or the Middle East in general. Insufficient funds, summer classes, and various odd jobs have always been a barrier in my ability to even think about excavating at Tel Megiddo. However, on July 8th, 2012, as part of the International MA Program in Archaeology and History of the Land of the Bible, those barriers fully collapsed and my ambition for the field has only begun.  Working in Area S I was assigned to Area S at Megiddo. Boy, was I in for a ride. For some reason other...

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Digging at Azekah – The First Week

Posted by on Jul 31, 2012

Digging at Azekah – The First Week

The first week of a dig is always a bit chaotic and crazy.  Sunday wasn’t a full day of work and as it was the first day of the dig season here at Azekah things were different schedule-wise. On Sundays we come back to site after the weekend off.  We have a few meetings when we get to NesHarim (our living area) and then we go out to the field for a few hours in the evening to work before coming back for dinner followed by another session. First full day at Azekah Monday marked the first full day of digging and that means wake-up call at 4 AM and we are at the site by 5. Now I’m a...

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