5 May 2022 Start
5 May 2022 End
18:00-19:00 CET Time
zoom lecture

e-mail.: [email protected]

Disability from Nagada to the Middle Kingdom

5 May 2022

Online Lecture (Zoom) in the “Conceptualizing Bodies in Ancient Egypt” cycle: “Disability from Nagada to the Middle Kingdom: Evidences, iconography, and perception” by Bénédicte Lhoyer (École du Louvre, Université Montpellier).


The period between Nagada and the Middle Kingdom is particularly rich in images of people with disabilities. Ιη fact, since prehistoric times, there have been already several works of art showing bodily deformities resulting from a disability.

Despite the omnipresence of images with a perfect physique, it is obvious that the reality was quite different: dwarves, hunchbacks, lame or starving people can be found in tombs, in relief and painting, as well as in statuary. And despite their obvious presence, few studies have been entirely devoted to them. Yet, they are essential in order to understand Egyptian society and to understand how the ancient Egyptians considered them. Thus, there is an ambivalence: a handicap can be seen as something positive (mainly the dwarves) or negative ( the starving foreigners in the pyramidal complexes), even in an in-between state as for the herdsmen with their twisted leg.

There is a vibrant discourse that still needs to be cleared up in our disci­pline. Consequently, our communication proposes to approach the theme of the handicap by relying simultaneously οη the human remains, the iconog­raphy chosen for the works of art and the perception of difference through texts and vocabulary.

This is a zoom lecture. Registration required with an email to :[email protected]