Potteries of the Caribbean - Friday 24 November at BSB

Our last lecture for 2017 will be from our departing section secretary Dr Becki Scott who will describe her recent scientific adventures in the Caribbean in ‘Potteries of the Caribbean’. The lecture will take place in the social area behind Brel Theatre at the British School of Brussels on Friday 24 November from 19h30.

The event will also be a chance to say ‘au revoir’ to Becki as she is now working at Greenwich University in the UK and is resigning as section secretary. We wish Becki well for the future and thank her for her work for the section over the years.

Potteries of the Caribbean
Dr Becki Scott, Greenwich University/ KUL
19h30 for 19h45 start, Friday 24 November 2017
British School of Brussels
Pater Dupierreuxlaan 1, 3080 Tervuren

The Caribbean has a rich and varied past, often represented by ceramic objects. Ceramic objects are usually prolific on archaeological sites and therefore form a focus for many interdisciplinary studies. These remains can provide a wealth of information about past cultures, relating to style, manufacturing technology, and ultimately past trade and resource management. Stylistic and typological studies can be used to create relative chronologies for a site, while chemical and petrographic analyses are used to provenance the raw material(s) used in the manufacture of the object. Although fragments of ceramics are sometimes available for destructive analyses, many objects held in collections are not. Likewise, these precious objects cannot always be transported to laboratories for further study.

Becki was involved with a couple of projects focusing on the provenancing of ceramic objects from the Lesser Antilles. Ceramic fragments from excavation contexts in the Caribbean had been sent to Europe for destructive chemical and petrographic analyses. However, larger, more complete objects in collections on the islands of Grenada and St. Vincent could neither be sub-sampled nor exported. Becki developed a method of using a portable X-ray fluorescence spectrometer (pXRF) to analyse these objects. In other words, she took the instrument to the objects, rather than the objects to the lab. The result of this work has meant that objects, which would otherwise not be analysed geochemically, could be used to contribute to studies determining the cultural interactions between the islands of the Lesser Antilles.

This event, which will carry the normal EUR 5 contribution to refreshments (bona fide students free), will take place at the British School of Brussels. As usual light refreshments will be available after the presentation to allow time for networking, further discussions and to say goodbye to Becki.

Please note that security procedures in place at BSB require all attendees to register in advance and you will need to show valid personal ID (Belgian ID card, Passport or equivalent) to gain access to the BSB site.

To reserve your seat(s), or to obtain more information, please contact the RSC Belgium section secretary via email: rscbelgium@gmail.com. For further information on future RSC Belgium and other events, please visit our forthcoming events page on the RSC Belgium blog.

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