Lana Troy

Egyptology is a subject that encourages a broad range of research interests, providing a material for in depth studies of a large variety of topics, with each topic comprising multi-dimensional characteristics. An example of this is my research on the topic of the ancient Egyptian queenship (Patterns of Queenship in ancient Egyptian Myth and History 1986) that touches upon religion, ideology, gender, history, iconography as well as issues of mentality and cognition. This subject continues to generate interest and I hope to be able to make a revised version of my study available in electronic form sometime during 2007.

My current research deals with self-definition in ancient Egypt. The material provides many opportunities to observe the formulation of a socially integrative individual identity through standardized and sanctioned textual and material narratives. This identity and its expressions are molded by a normative view of what a specific individual, belonging to a specific age group, social group and gender should be. Individual preferences, when given direct access to the means of expression, are also accommodated in this material, allowing the opportunity to meet shifting personal attributes within the same age, gender and social group. Distinctly expressed in textual sources, a more basic framework for identity is found in grave goods that also function as a source for understanding individual identity. The focus of the personal narrative is not constant but changes over time, thus also provides the opportunity to consider historical changes in the concept of self.

Another project that has occupied much of my time is the preparation of an electronic presentation of the most important object categories in the collection of the Victoria Museum of Egyptian Antiquities, now part of the Museum Gustavianum. As curator during the period 1983-1996, I had opportunity to deepen my knowledge of the collection, working with improving our knowledge of the individual objects, as well as structuring the collection, both chronologically and typologically. A series of catalogues are under preparation that will be linked to the Museum Gustavianum collection database, also under preparation. This project will provide maximum access to the collection to both Egyptologists and the public at large.