Was Cleopatra Black? Gal Gadot's Cleopatra Film Controversy.

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11m Oct 14, 2020

In this episode Dr. Rebecca Futo Kennedy takes us into another intense history debate and that is the question of "Was Cleopatra Black?"

In light of the upcoming movie and controversy surrounding Gal Gadot playing Cleopatra I felt like this was an excellent time to use this episode.

What was her ethnicity? Why is it controversial? Was she Macedonian? Are Macedonians even Greek? Was there an African in the Ptolemy family tree?

Is this argument merely people attempting to project their modern narratives and politics on the past?

Why does it even matter? Can we even answer the question?

In this talk Dr. Kennedy explains that until we stop attempting to remove black Africans from Egyptian history and until we stop using the modern and inaccurate term Sub-Saharan in our dialogue involving ancient Africa and Egypt it doesn't matter.

Again, in many ways this talk merely shows that this debate revolves more around modern politics and narratives rather than Cleopatra herself, the Ptolemies and how the ancient Egyptians saw them or themselves.

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Doctor Rebecca Futo Kennedy is Associate Professor of Classics, Women's and Gender Studies, and Environmental Studies at Denison University; and the Director of the Denison Museum. Her research focuses on the political, social, and cultural history of Classical Athens, Athenian tragedy, ancient immigration, ancient theories of race and ethnicity, and the reception of those theories in modern race science.

Support Dr. Rebecca Futo Kennedy and her awesome work at all of these great sites!

Academia: https://denison.academia.edu/RebeccaKennedy

Blog: https://rfkclassics.blogspot.com/

Buy her books: https://www.amazon.com/kindle-dbs/entity/author/B0024JIKS4

Twitter: https://twitter.com/kataplexis

Why I teach about race and ethnicity in the classical world (article.)


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