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1991-92 Annual Report

Mcguire Gibson

During the past academic year, McGuire Gibson has been occupied mainly in teaching and preparation of Nippur publications, but he has also been involved in a number of other activities. He completed an essay on the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers for the forthcoming Encyclopedia Britannica. He finally saw the publication of an article, "Duplicate Systems for Trade, a Key Element in Mesopotamian History," which was submitted to the editors of the book, Asian Trade Routes, in 1984.

He is working with an international group of archaeologists to help recover the antiquities lost by the regional museums of Iraq. As part of that effort, he and Augusta McMahon have published a volume entitled Lost Heritage: Antiquities Stolen from Iraq's Regional Museums. This book,has been issued by the American Association for Research in Baghdad, of which Gibson is the president.

In January 1992, Gibson visited Yemen in part to assess the possibilities for personal field work. Yemen, after the unification of two very dissimilar regimes into one country, presents greatly increased opportunities for research. Gibson's first visit to Hadramaut and the magnificent port of Aden has rekindled interest in the effort to establish the still little-known archaeology of South Arabia.

Shortly after returning from Yemen, he took on the office of President of the American Institute for Yemeni Studies, a consortium formed by American and Canadian universities and museums to encourage and facilitate research in Yemen. He was instrumental in founding the institute in 1978, and served as its first president. He still serves on the Board of Trustees of the Council of American Overseas Research Centers, headquartered in Washington, D.C. For a conference, "Research Access in the Mediterranean Basin and the Middle East in the Aftermath of the Gulf War," he delivered the introductory address and reported on the situation in Iraq, Syria, and Yemen. This meeting, held in Athens, was attended by resident directors of American research centers from Morocco to India. The papers from this conference will be published in 1993.

During the year, he delivered lectures to various public and academic groups in Chicago, Washington, Ghent, Belgium, and Amman, Jordan, and he attended a symposium on Islamic Palaces at Harvard.

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