Effie Athanassopoulos

Effie Athanassopoulos
Associate Professor Anthropology

Ph.D. University of Pennsylvania, 1993
Associate Professor of Anthropology and Classics
Graduate Advisor

Office: 805 Oldfather Hall
Email: efa@unl.edu
Phone: (402) 472-0172
Fax: (402) 472-9642

Subfield:

Archaeology

Major Research Interests:

Landscape archaeology, historical archaeology, Europe and the Mediterranean, archaeology and identity formation, digital archaeology.

Educational Background:

Ph.D., 1993, Anthropology Department, University of Pennsylvania
1980-82, Graduate Program in Classical Archaeology, University of Pennsylvania
B.A.1979, Department of History and Archaeology, University of Athens, Greece

Recent Peer Reviewed Publications:

“Landscape Archaeology and the Medieval Countryside: Results of the Nemea Valley Archaeological Project.” Nemea Valley Archaeological Project Volume II. American School of Classical Studies Publications, Princeton, NJ. 2016.

NVAP II: Landscape Archaeology and the Medieval Countryside Published

ASCSA

Landscape Archaeology and the Medieval Countryside: An Interview with Effie Athanassopoulos

“Ceramics and 3D Technology: A Medieval Assemblage from Nemea, Greece.” Effie Athanassopoulos and Kim Shelton. Digital Heritage 2015 International Conference Proceedings. IEEEXplore Digital Library. 2015.

“Byzantine Monuments and Architectural Cleansing in Nineteenth-Century Athens.” In Héritages de Byzance en Europe du Sud-Est à l'époque moderne et contemporaine. Olivier Delouis, Anne Couderc et Petre Guran, eds. Ecole Française d'Athènes. Pp. 195-218. 2013.

“Landscape Archaeology and the Medieval Countryside: Resettlement and Abandonment in the Nemea Region.” International Journal of Historical Archaeology, Special issue on the “Abandonment and (Re) Settlement of the Post-Classical Countryside in Greece and Albania.”  IJHA 14: 255-270. 2010.

 “Medieval Archaeology in Greece: A Historical Overview.” In Archaeology and History in Roman, Medieval and Post Medieval Greece: Studies on Method and Meaning in Honor of Timothy E. Gregory, W. Caraher, L. Jones Hall, and S. Moore, eds., pp. 15-35. Aldershot, UK: Ashgate Publishing. 2008.

Athanassopoulos, Effie and LuAnn Wandsnider, eds. “Mediterranean Archaeological Landscapes: Current Issues.” Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Museum Publications. 2004.

 “Historical Archaeology of Medieval Mediterranean Landscapes.” In Mediterranean Archaeological Landscapes: Current Issues, E. F. Athanassopoulos and L. Wandsnider, eds., pp. 81-98. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Museum Publications. 2004.

Athanassopoulos, Effie and LuAnn Wandsnider
“Mediterranean Landscape Archaeology Past and Present.” In Mediterranean Archaeological Landscapes: Current Issues, E. F. Athanassopoulos and L. Wandsnider, eds., pp. 1-13. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Museum Publications. 2004.

“An Ancient Landscape: European Ideals, Archaeology and Nation Building in Early Modern Greece.” Journal of Modern Greek Studies 20:273-305. 2002.

Book Reviews:

Review of “Fauvel: The First Archaeologist in Athens and his Philhellenic Correspondents” by Christoph W. Clairmont, Akanthus, 2007. Published in the Journal of Hellenic Studies, vol. 131, pp. 301-302. 2011.

Review of “Historical Archaeology of the Ottoman Empire: Breaking New Groundedited by Uzi Baram and Lynda Carroll, 2000, Kluwer Academic/Plenum Publishers, New York, NY. American Antiquity 67(1):182-3. 2002.

Recent Conference Papers and Presentations:

“Documenting Material Culture: 3D Laser Scanning, Photogrammetry and Archaeological Ceramics from Lincoln Pottery Works.” Effie Athanassopoulos, Aaron Pattee and Peter Bleed. Poster Presentation. Digital Humanities 2016 International Conference, Krakow, Poland, 12-16 July, 2016.

“Medieval household ceramics in 3D: an inventory of vessel shapes from Nemea, Greece.” Effie Athanassopoulos and Kim Shelton. Poster Presentation. Archaeological Institute of America Annual Meeting, San Francisco, CA, January 6-9, 2016. It received the 1st runner-up award.

“The Medieval Deposits from the Sanctuary of Zeus at Nemea, Southern Greece.” Effie Athanassopoulos and Kim Shelton (University of California, Berkeley). XIth Congress AIECM3 on Medieval and Modern Period Mediterranean Ceramics, October 19-24, 2015 Antalya, Turkey.

“Ceramics and 3D Technology: A Medieval Assemblage from Nemea, Greece.” Effie Athanassopoulos and Kim Shelton (University of California, Berkeley). Digital Heritage 2015 International Conference, September 28-October 2, 2015, Granada, Spain.

“Documenting Material Culture: 3D models of Ceramics from the Nemea Stadium.” Invited presentation/paper, Nemea Center for Classical Archaeology, University of California-Berkeley, March 17, 2015.

 “Landscape Archaeology and the Medieval Countryside: Nemea in Context.” Invited presentation/paper, Nemea Center for Classical Archaeology, University of California-Berkeley, March 16, 2015.

“Archaeology in Humanities Research: Three Case Studies in Fruitful Dialogue.” Panelist, Classics and Religious Studies Department, UNL, January 27, 2015.

Medieval Ceramics and Three-Dimensional Models: A Case Study from the Nemea Stadium, Greece.” Effie Athanassopoulos and Kim Shelton (Univer­sity of California, Berkeley). Archaeological Institute of America, 116 Annual Meeting, New Orleans, Louisiana, January 8-11, 2015.

Medieval and Post-Medieval Rural Landscapes: Towards an Integration of Material and Textual Histories.” Invited paper in session “Landscape Archaeology in Greece and Turkey” organized by John Bintliff and Burcu Erciyas. European Association of Archaeologists, 20th Annual Meeting, 10-14 September 2014, Istanbul, Turkey.

“A Large Assemblage of Medieval Coarse Wares from the Sanctuary of Zeus at Nemea.” Kristina Whitney, Effie Athanassopoulos and Kim Shelton (University of California-Berkeley). Poster Presentation with UCARE student. Archaeological Institute of America Annual Meeting, Chicago, Illinois, January 2-5, 2014.

Landscape Perceptions of Change: From Byzantium to Frangokratia.” Keynote speaker, invited paper presented at “Byzantium in Transition” workshop, May 24-26, 2013, Island of Paros, Greece. Organizers: Athanasios Vionis and Maria Parani, University of Cyprus.

Archaeological Surveys as Social History: Case Studies from Medieval Southern Greece.” Invited paper presented at Dumbarton Oaks 2013 Byzantine Spring Colloquium “Byzantine Survey Archaeology: Reflections and Approaches”, March 29-30, 2013, Washington, D.C. Organizers: Sharon Gerstel, UCLA, and John Haldon, Princeton University.

“The Sanctuary of Zeus at Nemea: The Medieval Deposits.” Paper in panel “Current Research at Nemea: New Finds and New Insights”. Annual Meeting of the Archaeological Institute of America, January 5-8, 2012, Philadelphia, PA.

“Classical vs. Byzantine pasts in the Nineteenth Century: Athenian Monuments and Archaeological Practice.” International Conference “Re-imagining the Past: Antiquity and Modern Greek Culture.” University of Birmingham, UK, Institute of Archaeology and Antiquity, Centre for Byzantine, Ottoman and Modern Greek Studies, June 27-28, 2011.

Co-organizer of panel “From Town to Country: The Archaeology of Modern Greek Landscapes.”  Modern Greek Studies Association Symposium, October 15-17, 2009, Simon Fraser University, Vancouver, Canada.

“Athens in the 19th Century: Archaeological Landscapes and Competing Pasts.” Paper presented at the Modern Greek Studies Association Symposium, October 15-17, 2009, Simon Fraser University, Vancouver, Canada.

“Byzantium and Archaeological Practice in 19th century Greece.” Paper presented at Conference “The Presence of Byzantium in Modern and Contemporary Southeastern Europe.” Organized by the French Shcool of Archaeology, Athens, Greece, September 22-24, 2008.

“Landscape Archaeology and the Medieval Countryside: Resettlement and Abandonment in the Nemea Region.” Paper presented in the 108th Annual Meeting of the Archaeological Institute of America, January 4-7, 2007, San Diego, CA.

 “Archaeological Landscapes, Mentalités and National Ideals in 19th Century Greece.” Paper presented in the 70th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, March 30-April 3, 2005, Salt Lake City, Utah.

 “Archaeology and the Excluded Past: Classical vs. Byzantine Monuments of 19th century Athens.” Paper presented in the 105th Annual Meeting of the Archaeological Institute of America, January 2-5, 2004, San Francisco, CA.


Research

Summary:

I am a historical archaeologist with interests in landscape, identity formation, material culture, and the role of digital technologies in teaching and research. Currently, I am working in Greece, with the medieval deposits from the excavations at the Sanctuary of Zeus in Nemea, a collaboration with the Nemea Center, University of California, Berkeley. I use 3D laser scanning to document the collection, and develop a digital library where the 3D objects can be archived and shared. I am also working with archaeological collections from historic sites in Nebraska, creating new digital resources to facilitate research and public access to Nebraska’s material past.

Projects:
My primary research interests are in historical and landscape archaeology. I have worked for several years in the region of Nemea, Greece, and published results from an archaeological survey of the area, the Nemea Valley Archaeological Project (NVAP), a project sponsored by the American School of Classical Studies at Athens (ASCSA).  My work in Nemea has entered a new phase through my participation in the research and publication program of the Nemea Center for Classical Archaeology, University of California, Berkeley. I am currently analyzing the medieval deposits from the excavations at the Sanctuary of Zeus and Stadium in Nemea. Overall, the excavations have produced substantial evidence for occupation during the 12th-13th centuries A.D. Large amounts of well-preserved medieval pottery, including coarse wares and diagnostic glazed wares have been recovered. The goal of this analysis is to refine the chronology and document the composition of the assemblage through visually effective means, such as 3D laser scanning. The next phase is to develop a digital library where the 3D objects can be archived and shared. Such a research tool will make readily available a significant body of archaeological materials that is currently inaccessible. Thus, this project is embracing digital solutions to ensure the long-term preservation of archaeological data as well as public access.

Several 3D models are available on sketchfab:  Nemea Medieval Ceramics

Another area I have been conducting research is the historical development of archaeology and its relation to the process of Western identity formation. Of particular interest are questions of cultural continuity and the role archaeology had to play in the process of Greek nation building in the 19th century. My work in this area continues to evolve with conference presentations and publications and plans for a monograph which will examine the changing role of archaeology in the formation of Greek national identity in the course of the 19th century.

I am also working with archaeological collections in the Nebraska State Museum and the Nebraska State Historical Society. I use these collections to offer a research experience to students in my Historical Archaeology: Current Topics (ANTH 431/831) and Analysis of Archaeological Materials: Historic Material Culture (ANTH 487/887E) courses.

The Historical Archaeology class has analyzed part of a very large collection from the excavation of Lincoln Pottery Works. The Lincoln Pottery Works (LPW), a pottery factory in Lincoln, NE, operated from 1880 until around 1903. The inventory of the LPW centered on utilitarian, domestic wares. It produced crocks, jugs, bowls, jars, lids, flower pots, planters, architectural terra cotta and other types of ceramics. Ceramic technology developed rapidly during this period to include semi-mechanized means of forming pots, known as “jigging” or “jollying,” which allowed for mass production of vessels. LPW also exhibits the latest innovations in nineteenth-century kiln design in the form of downdraft kilns. When the LPW was founded, Lincoln was a prosperous and rapidly growing city with a population of c. 13,000 in 1880 which had increased to 55,000 in 1890 (Bleed and Schoen, 1990: 34). After the factory closed, most of the property became part of a housing development.  The site was excavated by Peter Bleed in 1986-1987, and the results were published in 1993. The LPW collections are currently in the Nebraska State Historical Society.

We are in the midst of a digitization project to facilitate different kinds of analysis and build on the original publication of the results; for example, the distribution of LPW products in other Midwestern states (the records of the business have not been preserved), socioeconomic aspects, food ways, a gendered perspective, etc. The first step, however, is to create a digital resource that will draw attention to this collection and engage other researchers and the public. By utilizing the latest technology to create and present accurate models of LPW representative products, we hope to bring wider attention to this important assemblage, which is an integral part of the history of nineteenth century Nebraska and the industrial archaeology of the Great Plains region.

The Historic Material Culture class has concentrated on the documentation and analysis of artifacts from an excavation that took place on the UNL campus. In May of 1997, a construction crew exposed a cistern while working on a building expansion of the Student Union on the University of Nebraska-Lincoln city campus. The cistern was excavated by Dr. Peter Bleed along with University of Nebraska field school students who were notified of the discovery and had the opportunity to salvage the material before the cistern was destroyed. The cistern contained ceramics, metal artifacts, faunal remains, and a large number of bottles, many of them medicinal. The analysis of the contents of medicinal bottles has led to collaborations with Chemistry faculty Mark Griep and Rebecca Lai. This collaboration has evolved to a new project that will offer research experiences to students interested in interdisciplinary perspectives.

References:

Bleed, Peter and Christopher Schoen. 1990. The Lincoln Pottery Works: A Historical Perspective. Nebraska History 71: 34-44.

Schoen, Christopher and Peter Bleed. 1993. The Archaeology of the Lincoln Pottery Works. Central Plains Archaeology 3 (1): 1-240.

Research Links:

The Nemea Valley Archaeological Project
Internet Edition, sponsored by Bryn Mawr College
http://www.brynmawr.edu/archaeology/NVAP/Index.htm

Nemea Center, University of California, Berkeley
http://nemeacenter.berkeley.edu/



UCARE Projects

 UCARE grant, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Lauren Vagts, Anthropology major, academic year 2015-2016. Title of project: “Medieval Nemea: Building a Digital Resource.”

UCARE grant, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Liz Workentine, Anthropology major, academic year 2014-2015. Title of project: “Archaeological Ceramics and 3D Models: A Case Study from Nemea, Greece.”

UCARE grant, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, (1st year 2012-13) Kristina Whitney, an Anthropology major, came to Nemea during the summer of 2012 to assist in the analysis of the medieval deposits from the excavations of the Sanctuary of Zeus.

UCARE grant, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, (1st year, 2008-09, 2nd year 2009-2010) Maria Bender, a Classics major, was supported to work under my supervision on the topic “Ian Campbell’s Archaeological Photographs.” Honors thesis "Archaeological Photography and Site Transformation: Pompeii in the Past 100 Years."

UCARE grant, University of Nebraska-Lincoln (1st year, 2000-01, 2nd year, 2001-2002 ). Jennifer Farrell-Glaubius, an Anthropology and Classics major, was supported by the program to work under my supervision on the topic of her thesis “Agricultural Estates in Ancient Greece”. In the year 2001-02 Jennifer assisted with the analysis of the data from the archaeological field project “Amphora Production, Agriculture and Trade: The Alonissos Archaeological Project”.

Courses Taught:

Introduction to Anthropology (Anthropology 110)
Archaeology of World Civilizations (Anthropology 252-Classics 252)
The Medieval World: Byzantium (Classics 315-History 315)
The Classical World: Archaeology and Texts (Classics 320)
Old World Prehistory: Archaeology of Europe (Anthropology 438/838-Classics 438/838)
Historical Archaeology: Current Topics (Anthropology 431/831)
Analysis of Archaeological Materials: Historic Material Culture (Anthropology 487E/887E)
Seminar: Archaeology and Cultural Identity (Anthropology 935)
Archaeological Field School
Archaeological Lab Work