Not your Mummy’s Memes: Ancient Egypt Comes to Natchitoches

By Kevin Shannahan


The New Kingdom Era in Ancient Egypt took place over 3,000 years ago in a world far different than our own. Nonetheless, even in a world as different from ours as ancient Egypt, some aspects of human nature remain a constant.

Not your Mummy’s Memes: Humor and Politics in New Kingdom Egyptian Art was the title of a presentation given by Dr. Elizabeth A. Cummins at NSU’s Morrison Hall Wednesday, March 7th to a group of about 50 students, faculty and community members. Her talk showed various art pieces from the era ranging from commissioned works for tombs to artists practicing their craft.

Most of the art poked fun at authority figures, some quite ribaldly. One piece showed a Pharaoh playing Senet, a board game that still is played today. The event was an interesting look into a past world different, yet similar in many ways to our own. Poking fun at one’s rulers seems to be a universal across time and culture. In addition to her teaching and scholarly work, Dr. Cummins has appeared on the History Channel in a show concerning Ancient Egypt.