Frucht Memorial Lecture and Student Conference

The organizing committee of the 2012 Richard Frucht Memorial Lecture Series and Student Conference is pleased to announce this year’s distinguished speaker, Dr. Larry Zimmerman. Dr. Zimmerman is Professor of Anthropology and Museum Studies and Public Scholar of Native American Representation at Purdue University-Indiana University Indianapolis, and renown as a researcher, writer, educator, and supporter of indigenous rights. His career has focused on the archaeology and indigenous peoples of the North American Plains, and his interests extend to archaeological ethics, with particular attention to repatriation and reburial issues and collaboration with Native American communities. Recently, Dr. Zimmerman has been concerned with the application of archaeology to homelessness. Dr. Zimmerman’s professional approach is best described by himself: “What we archaeologists do isn’t just about groups that are gone, but groups that continue into the present day, and how and what we study affects their identities and their lives.”

Dr. Zimmerman earned his Ph.D. in Anthropology from the University of Kansas-Lawrence in 1976. In 1974, he was appointed Assistant Professor of Anthropology and Director of the Archaeology Laboratory at the University of South Dakota. While at the University of South Dakota, Dr. Zimmerman was promoted to Associate (1978), then full, Professor (1983), and also served as Anthropology Program Director (1983-1988), Faculty Administrative Intern (1985), President’s Fellow (1987-1988), Chairman of the Department of Social Behavior (1988-1994), and Distinguished Regents Professor (1990-1996). He has been Adjunct Professor and Graduate Faculty Fellow of Museum Studies at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (1992-1996) and was a Visiting Professor in the Department of Archaeology at Southampton University, United Kingdom in 1992. From 1996 to 1998, he was an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Iowa, and again held the position from 2001 to the present. He served of Head of Archaeology at the Minnesota Historical Society from 2002 to 2004. Since 2004, he has held his current position with Purdue University-Indiana University Indianapolis.

In 2008, Dr. Zimmerman was awarded the inaugural Peter Ucko Memorial Award by the World Archaeological Congress, highlighting his commitment to collaborative efforts with indigenous communities and actively seeking their participation in those activities.

The Frucht organizing committee believes Dr. Zimmerman exhibits the highest level of professional and personal dedication to archaeology and anthropology as a whole, and we are deeply honoured by his acceptance of our invitation. We know his research and expertise will have great appeal to students and faculty in the Department of Anthropology, as well as to many members of the University of Alberta and Edmonton community.

The Richard Frucht Memorial Lecture Series and Student Conference will take place February 29th through March 2nd on the University of Alberta’s North Campus. Dr. Zimmerman’s public lecture, Displaced and Barely Visible: Using Archaeology to Understand Homelessness, explores the use of archaeology to study the material traces of homelessness, and how archaeologists can search for clues in items left behind that may help to improve the lives of the homeless. The Frucht public lecture is scheduled for February 29th at 6:30 p.m. in Telus Centre room 150, with a light reception before and after the lecture. All are welcome and encouraged to attend.

His departmental lecture, The Good, the Bad, and the Bearded: Popular Images of archaeologists and how we see ourselves, or, are archaeologists their own worst enemies?, discusses the ways archaeologists create and view themselves, and how those perceptions are understood by the public—with potential consequences for the future of the discipline. The Frucht departmental lecture will take place on Friday, March 2nd at 3 p.m. in Tory Breezeway room 1. A reception will follow immediately in the Breezeway.

For more information on Dr. Zimmerman, his academic website contains a full curriculum vitae and a detailed academic profile. It may be accessed at http://larryjzimmerman.com/.