Modern-day “Monuments Woman” to discuss work in war-torn Near East
Modern-day “Monuments Woman” Laura Tedesco, an archeologist working in many war-torn areas of the Near East as a representative of the U.S. Department of State, will discuss her experiences in the field and the importance of cultural and historic preservation in U.S. diplomacy on Thursday, April 10.
Her lecture will be given at 5 p.m. in the Antone Academic Center, Room 107 and is being presented by the Noreen Stonor Drexel Cultural and Historic Preservation Program.
A cultural heritage program manager with the Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs, Tedesco is tasked with identifying, protecting and preserving important cultural heritage sites, archaeological sites and monuments. Her work has been focused in Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, Nepal, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and a number of former Soviet republics.
Among Tedesco’s significant projects are the excavation and cataloging of Mes Aynak, the “Silk Road” site of the world’s second largest copper deposit, and the expansion of the National Museum in Kabul, Afghanistan. The museum was shelled and looted in 1993 during the civil war, and many of its objects were stolen or destroyed.
Tedesco holds a Ph.D. in anthropology from New York University, where her area of study included the Near East and Central Asia. Before joining the State Department, she worked at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. With more than 18 years of experience in archaeology and cultural resource management, she has conducted field research in the republics of Georgia and Armenia, as well as in Syria and other nations in western and south Asia.