On Sunday November 3, 2019, P&P-member dr. Marleen De Meyer will give a lecture at the Twelfth International Congress of Egyptologists - ICE XII which will be hosted in Cairo, Egypt from 3-8 November 2019. The title of her lecture will be “Capart the American!” From Brussels to Brooklyn in the 1930s.
While Jean Capart (1877-1947) is generally known as the founder of Egyptology in Belgium, it is less generally known that apart from a full career in the Cinquantenaire Museum in Brussels, he also built a career in the US. At the invitation of the Commission for Relief in Belgium Educational Foundation, Capart toured the US in 1924-25 as visiting professor, lecturing across the country. The contacts he made during this and other visits in the 1920s, contributed to his appointment in 1932 as advisory curator of the Egyptian Department at the Brooklyn Museum. He would hold this post almost until the outbreak of WWII, dividing his time between Brussels and Brooklyn. During these years he subscribed Brooklyn to the Egypt Exploration Society, even making it the main funder for the excavations at Amarna for a while. Based on archival research, this paper discusses the choices Capart made in helping to build up the collection of the Egyptian Department at the Brooklyn Museum. The research was conducted within the framework of the EOS Project “Pyramids & Progress. Belgian Expansionism and the Making of Egyptology, 1830-1952”.