Claire Nicholas

Claire Nicholas



College: College of Humanities
Discipline: Archaeology
Department: Archaeology

I completed my MA in Egyptian Archaeology with UCL in 2011. The results of my MA dissertation have been published in a book entitled 'Moving monuments: can heritage be exported and still be appreciated?'. The research was based on a case-study of [Egyptian] Nubia, and collected opinions of visitors to the rescued temples.

It is my intention to take this research further with a PhD; I will be encouraging Egyptian Nubians to be more inquisitive about their past and trying to make museum collections more accessible to them. Comments received from Nubians during my MA research bemoaned the fact that Europeans and Americans seemed to know more about their heritage and history than they did themselves! I hope to address this imbalance by increasing the amount of relevant information in Arabic on websites, and pointing them to where this data can be found.

Results towards this aim have already been achieved, through publicising relevant museum links in Arabic on my website. See

The various aspects included in the research are:

  • Liaising with the Nubian Museum to understand the relationship between local Nubians and their archaeology;
  • Identifying where other museum collections of Nubian artefacts exist around the world;
  • Identifying how many of the above are available online, and whether in Arabic;
  • Conveying this info to Nubian community leaders and asking what access they have to the internet in order to see these online databases;
  • Recording oral histories of life in Old Nubia by various Nubian elders from Aswan and Kom Ombo;
  • Conducting a feasibility study into applying extracts from these oral histories for relevant exhibitions in the Nubian Museum.

Being done on a part-time basis, this research will be conducted over a seven-year period and will bring in the use of social media to align the new future of Egypt and its Nubian people with cutting-edge research technology. In addition, field research will be conducted in Egypt in order to have in-depth conversations with the people, working closely with the museum in Aswan.

A secondary aim is to get personally involved with putting the results of the research into action, before the UK government puts me out to pasture!