Institute of Archaeology


Egypt’s Dispersed Heritage: views from Egypt

This project revealed the expansive legacy of British fieldwork in Egypt and its distribution of archaeological finds to around 350 museums across the world.

Drawn (comic) image with three figures one of whom is an Egyptian Pharaoh figure and two figures in modern dress with Arabic writing above them

From the 1880s to the 1980s hundreds of excavations were carried out across Egypt by British organisations. While many of the objects they discovered remained in Egypt, a large proportion were distributed to around 350 museums in 27 countries across the world.  

The AHRC-funded project ‘Egypt’s Dispersed Heritage: views from Egypt’, partnered with five UK museums and archives to communicate this history of dispersal and create opportunities for dialogue with modern Egyptian communities using cultural reference points and modes of communication of relevance to those groups.

This was achieved through a programme of interventions delivered between 2020 and 2022, co-designed, developed, and delivered with them, including street performances, comic strips, and educational resources all in Egyptian Arabic. 

Related outputs

  • Abd el-Gawad, H. and Stevenson, A. 2021. Egypt’s Dispersed Heritage: using comic art for multidirectional storytelling. Journal of Social Archaeology 21(1): 121–145.
  • Stevenson, A. and Abd el-Gawad, H. (forthcoming) Egyptian Mummified Remains: Communities of Descent and Practice. In Biers, T. and Clary, M. (eds.) Museums, Heritage, and Death. London and New York: Routledge.
  • Comics by Nasser Junior: (https://www.nasserjunior.com/work ). Deena Mohammed (https://deenadraws.art/en/home)


Museum interpretation

Image: Comic series produced in 2020 ‘Nasser, Heba and our dispersed heritage’, drawn by Nasser Junior and co-conceived with UCL project researcher Heba Abd el Gawad.