The house is where the ideas for the project first came together—to seek through film a means of making sense of the varied materials that constitute this particular collection, of understanding the potential of the archive in both its physical and digital manifestations, of producing knowledge through our engagement with these items. Through the process of putting together our own archive of material evolving from the project, we hope to invite collaboration across disciplines and audiences both academic and general. The house itself might be seen as a metaphor for the foundations and additions of Filming Antiquity. Since it is where the project began, it is where this addition/edition of the archive begins.
The collection includes letters, Harding’s day diaries, an unpublished typewritten biographical manuscript, and photos of Harding’s childhood in China and Singapore as well as his work at Tell Jemmeh, Tell Fara, Tell el-Ajjul and Tell ed-Duweir (British Mandate Palestine) and Transjordan, and his co-workers and personal acquaintances. Alongside the papers and photographs were the films, housed in their Baby Pathé canisters, and with limited identifying material about their contents. Michael could not help with what might be captured in the moving images but the possibilities include excavation work, on-site activities or documentation of Harding’s other interests, including perhaps his work with the Amman Dramatic Society.
Filming Antiquity is currently funded through University College London’s Centre for Humanities Interdisciplinary Research Projects (CHIRP) Small Grants Award Scheme. A list of the UCL staff involved in Filming Antiquity and details of projected outputs are available here.