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Darlene Brooks Hedstrom, Ph.D.

Kenneth E. Wray Chair in the Humanities
Department Chair & Professor of History
Director of Archaeology
Ancient Near East, Archaeology, Late Antiquity, Byzantium

Hollenbeck Hall 303
(937) 327-6338

Professor Home Page:

2017 Publication from Cambridge University Press: The Monastic Landscape of Late Antique Egypt: An Archaeological Reconstruction

Recent Awards:

Educational Background:

  • Ph.D. Miami University
  • M.A. Wheaton College Graduate School
  • B.A. Wheaton College

Field Notes and News

Select Publications: Book Chapters

  • "The Afterlife of Sherds: Architectural Reuse Strategies at the Monastery of John the Little, Wadi Natrun," in Functional Aspects of Egyptian Ceramics within their Archaeological Context, eds. Bettina Bader and Mary Ownby (Leuven: Peeters, 2012), 307-326. Co-authored with G. Pyke.
  • "Architecture of the Coptic Church" in Churches of Egypt, ed. Gawdat Gabra and Gertrud van Loon (Cairo: American University in Cairo Press, 2007; paperback 2012), 19-27.
  • "Divine Architects: Designing the Monastic Dwelling Place," in Egypt in the Byzantine World, 450-700, ed. Roger Bagnall (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2007; paperback 2010), 368-389.

Select Articles

  • "Models of Seeing and Reading Monastic Archaeology," Cistercian Studies Quarterly 48.3 (2013): 299-315.
  • "Treading on Antiquity: Anglo-American Missionaries and the Religious Landscape of Nineteenth-Century Coptic Egypt," Material Religion 8.2 (2012): 127-152.
  • "New Archaeology at Ancient Scetis: Surveys and Initial Excavations at the Monastery of St. John the Little in Wadi al-Natrun: Yale Monastic Archaeology Project," Dumbarton Oaks Papers 64 (2010): 217-228. Co-authored with S. Davis, T. Herbich. S. Ikram, D. McCormack, M.-D. Nenna and G. Pyke
  • "Second Report on the Excavation of the SCA in the Area of the Monastery of Shenute at Suhag," Peter Grossmann, and contribution on "Ceramic Survey," Dumbarton Oaks Papers, 63 (2009): 167-219.
  • "The Geography of the Monastic Cell in Early Egyptian Monastic Literature," Church History 78.4 (2009): 1-36. 
  • "A Geophysical Survey of Ancient Pherme: Magnetic Prospection at an Early Christian Monastic Site in the Egyptian Delta," Journal of the American Research Center in Egypt 43 (2007): 129-37. Co-authored with T. Herbich and S. Davis.
  • "An Archaeological Mission for the White Monastery," Coptica 4 (2005): 1-26.
  • "The Excavation in the Monastery of Apa Shenute (Dayr Anba Shinuda) at Suhag," Dumbarton Oaks Papers 58 (2004): 371-382. Co-authors Mohamed Abdal-Rassul, Peter Grossmann and Elizabeth S. Bolman

Courses Taught

  • Ancient Mediterranean Worlds
  • Archaeological Field Methods
  • Archaeology of the Near East
  • Arrian, Alexander and the Archaeology of Conquest
  • Athleticism and Sexuality in Antiquity
  • Byzantium: The Mediterranean World
  • Cleopatra
  • Excavating Egypt's History: The Amarna Period
  • Early Islamic History
  • Great Mongol Khans
  • Greek Archaeology
  • Herodotus and the Greeks
  • Holy Antique Women! Byzantine Female Hagiography
  • Introduction to Archaeology
  • Late Antiquity
  • Martyred Bodies in Late Antiquity
  • Modern Middle East
  • Mummies, Myths and Monuments of Ancient Egypt
  • Nomadic Archaeology of Asia
  • Premodern World History
  • Silk Road Empires
  • Senior Thesis
  • Seminar in History Travel in the Ancient World


  • 2007-2008 Fulbright Scholar to Egypt
  • 2007 and 2006 Dumbarton Oaks Project Grant in Byzantine Studies for the White Monastery Federation Project
  • 2005 National Endowment for the Humanities Collaborative Research Grant for the White Monastery Federation Project with Elizabeth Bolman, Principal Investigator
  • 2003 Freeman Grant for Travel to Japan and Course Development
  • 2003 Faculty Research Fund Board, Wittenberg University
  • 2001-03 Faculty Development Board, Personal Enrichment Grant
  • 2002 NEH Summer Institute, Eurasian History, Harvard University
  • 2000 Erasmus Institute Summer Seminar in History, University of Notre Dame
  • 1998-1999 USIA Fellow, American Research Center in Egypt, Cairo, EGYPT

Research Interests

She is currently working on three book projects, Feeding Asceticism: The Archaeology of Monastic Cooking in the Byzantine East (with Arc Humanities Press); The Desert Fathers for the Past Imperfect series at Arc Humanities; and The Archaeology of an Early Medieval Residence at the Monastery of John the Little (Yale Egyptological Series). After nearly ten years of fieldwork, Dr. Brooks Hedstrom is preparing a volume on a 25-roomed residence from the ninth and tenth centuries for the Yale Monastery Archaeology Project North as the Senior Archaeological Consultant.

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