UMass Amherst Anthropology Professor H. Martin Wobst To Give Distinguished Faculty Lecture March 3

AMHERST, Mass. – H. Martin Wobst, professor of anthropology at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, will give the third in this year’s Distinguished Faculty Lecture series on Monday, March 3 at 4 p.m. in the Massachusetts Room of the Mullins Center. The talk is free and open to the public. A reception will follow the event.

Wobst’s talk is titled, “An Archaeological Look at Us.” He says while archaeology arose to study our past, the idea that artifacts help to constitute societies and shape individuals is as important for understanding our own society as it is in making sense of the past. Wobst will show that the UMass Amherst campus and its surroundings are rich field sites for a more encompassing archaeology, a science to illuminate the present as much as the past.

Wobst joined the university in 1971 and is a professor of anthropology. He specializes in archaeology and its theory, indigenous archaeology, the social articulations of material cultures, egalitarian societies, computer simulations of social systems, Europe east and southeast of Germany, Australia and South Africa.

He served as chairman of the department from 1978-84 and was acting chairman in 1988; was a guest professor at the Institute for Prehistory at the University of Tuebingen, Germany in 1985; was a guest professor at the Institute for Pre- and Protohistory at the University of Erlangen-Neurenberg, Germany in 1993; spent the summer of 2004 as a visiting research fellow at Flinders University in Adelaide, South Australia, and in 2006 was a founding member of the doctoral program in indigenous archaeology at the University of Caramarca, Argentina.

Wobst has been a member of the American Association for the Advancement of Science from 1968-91 and a fellow since 1991; has been a member of the World Archaeological Congress since 1996; a fellow of the Royal Anthropological Institute in London since 1973 and the Society for American Anthropology since 1971; has been a member of the Prehistory Society in London since 1975. Wobst has been a member of the Northeast Anthropological Association since 1979 and was president from 1990-92; has been a member of the Archaeological Institute of America since 1971; and a member of the American Ethnology Association since 1982.

Wobst earned a bachelor’s degree in anthropology from the University of Michigan in 1966 and a master’s degree in 1968. He earned a doctorate in anthropology from Michigan in 1971.

The fourth and final lecture of this year’s series will be given by Sara Lennox, department of languages, literatures and cultures, who will speak on Monday, April 28.

A reception follows each talk. Faculty members in the series receive a Chancellor’s Medal following their lecture. The Chancellor’s Medal is the highest honor bestowed on individuals for exemplary and extraordinary service to the campus. The lecture series is sponsored by the offices of the chancellor and the provost.

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