Ed Maher, visiting lecturer in sociology at North Central College, co-presented a conference paper, titled “Iron Age Village Economy and Possible Literacy: Preliminary Remarks on the Faunal Data from Khirbet Summeily,” at the annual conference for the American Schools of Oriental Research in November 2013.
Since his presentation, Maher has had an invited contribution, titled “Lambs to the Slaughter: Late Iron Age Cultic Orientations at Philistine Ekron,” published in the volume, “Material Culture Matters: Essays on the Archaeology of the Southern Levant in Honor of Seymour Gitin.” His analysis considers the evidence for animal sacrifice from a 2,700 years-old Philistine temple from the site of Tel Miqne-Ekron, Israel.
Also, his invited submission titled “Animal Exploitation” was published in fall 2013 in “The Oxford Encyclopedia of the Bible and Archaeology.” The article outlines the sacred and secular uses of terrestrial, aquatic and avian animal species by ancient human communities of the Southern Levant.
He caps off the academic year by conducting field research at two sites in Israel this summer. One of these sites, Khirbet Summeily, is an 11th to 8th century B.C. village settlement in the northern Negev. Its location between Judah and Philistia (land of the Philistines) marks its potential in better understanding ancient borders and frontier zones. The other site, Jaffa, lies on the northern coast of Israel and was occupied at various points in antiquity from at least the beginning of the 2nd millennium B.C. into the modern era. As a port city, Jaffa represented a way station for ships traveling between Egypt and the Lebanese coast. Eventually, Jaffa became an essential port of entry for ancient Canaan, which also later served ancient Israel.
Maher, a faculty member at North Central since 2008, earned his B.A. from the University of Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada, his M.A. from Katholieke Universiteit Leuven in Belgium and his Ph.D. from the University of Illinois at Chicago.