Marija Gimbutas (1921-1994)
Marija Gimbutas was a renowned Lithuanian American archeologist whose major research accomplishments were in the Neolithic and Bronze Age cultures of “Old Europe”, and her “Kurgan Hypothesis” in which the Proto-Indo-European origins were to be found in the Pontic Steppe.
As an immigrant from post-World War II Europe, with her family, she settled in the Boston area where she continued her research investigations. I was stunned to learn of the discrimination that she suffered in order to pursue her career: blatant misogyny and anti-immigrant bigotry. Having been born to Lithuanian immigrants, I felt an obligation to honor her, her accomplishments, and her dedication to her work.
Two years ago, I organized and funded the First Marija Gimbutas Memorial Lecture which took place at the University of Chicago’s Oriental Institute. Colin Renfrew, from Cambridge University in England, flew in to give the presentation. Early in their careers they were close research collaborators. Then Renfrew changed his attitude towards Gimbutas–he became her primary adversary. During his presentation he admitted that the latest research results support Gimbutas’ theories, not his own. The full presentation can be found on YouTube by clicking here.
On Wednesday, February 5, Petra Goedegebuure, of the Oriental Institute, will give the Second Marija Gimbutas Memorial Lecture. The title of her talk is “Anatolians on the Move: From Kurgans to Kanesh”. The OI’s announcement of this presentation can be viewed by clicking here.
You are most cordially invited to attend. This talk is free of cost and open to the public. A reception will follow the presentation.
Oriental Institute, University of Chicago, 1155 E. 58th St., Chicago, IL 60637, Wednesday, February 5, 7 to 9 PM
If you cannot attend the presentation itself, the talk will be live streamed on YouTube. To see it, little after 7 PM, go to YouTube and search “Oriental Institute Lecture”. The presentation should pop up instantly. Also, this presentation will be available on YouTube for future use.
Incidentally, 2021 is the 100-year anniversary of Gimbutas’ birth. UNESCO is including her name in their 2021 listing of notable anniversaries.