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|Views: (3786) Date: (12-01-09) Time: (00:00:38)|
King Tut's face can now be viewed in Egypt.
Zahi Hawass (born 28 May 1947 in Damietta, Egypt) is an Egyptian archaeologist and Egyptologist and the current Secretary General of the Egyptian Supreme Council of Antiquities. He has also worked at archaeological sites in the Nile Delta, the Western Desert, and the Upper Nile Valley.
Hawass originally intended to become a lawyer, but then studied Greek and Roman archeology at Alexandria University, where he obtained a Bachelor's degree. He obtained a diploma in Egyptology at the University of Cairo, then continuing his studies at the University of Pennsylvania, where he received his Doctoral Degree (Ph.D) in 1987.
After 1988, he taught Egyptian archeology, history and culture, mostly at the American University in Cairo and the University of California, Los Angeles. In 1998, he was appointed secretary of state and director of the Giza Plateau. In 2002 he was appointed Secretary General of the Egyptian Supreme Council of Antiquities.
Hawass is currently spearheading a movement to return many prominent unique and/or irregularly taken Ancient Egyptian artifacts, such as the Rosetta Stone, the bust of Nefertiti, the zodiac ceiling painting from the Dendera Temple, the bust of Ankhhaf (the architect of the Khafra Pyramid), the faces of Amenhotep III's tomb at the Louvre Museum, the Luxor Temple's obelisk at the Place de la Concorde and the statue of Hemiunu, nephew of the Pharaoh Khufu, builder of the largest pyramid, to Egypt from collections in various other countries. In July 2003, the Egyptians demanded the return of the Rosetta Stone. Hawass, as secretary general of the Supreme Council of Antiquities in Cairo, told the press, "If the British want to be remembered, if they want to restore their reputation, they should volunteer to return the Rosetta Stone because it is the icon of our Egyptian identity."
Hawass is also a vocal opponent of ancient astronauts' theories about a previous highly technologically advanced, worldwide civilization. He appeared on a History Channel show to dispel the theories, and provided evidence to show that the Egyptians built the pyramids of Egypt.
He is opposed to the claims of Afrocentrists. According to Dr. Hawass "Tutankhamun was not black, and the portrayal of ancient Egyptian civilization as black has no element of truth to it."
In the West, Hawass has been accused of domineering behaviour, including forbiding archaeologists to announce their own findings, and courting the media for his own gain after they were denied access to archaeological sites because, according to Hawass, they were too amateurish. Others however, including several Egyptologists, have said in interviews that most of what Hawass has done for the field was long overdue. Hawass has typically ignored or dismissed his critics, and when asked about it, he indicated that what he does is for the sake of Egypt and the preservation of its antiquities. Hawass has instituted a systematic program for the preservation and restoration of historical monuments, while training Egyptians to improve their expertise on methods of excavation, retrieval and preservation.
SOURCE: WIKIPEDIA (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zahi_Hawass)