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SUNY Potsdam History Faculty & Alumni Present at Egypt Research Conference

June 13, 2024
SUNY Potsdam Professor Dr. Steven Stannish and Three Alumni Present at American Research Center in Egypt Conference

A faculty member and two alumni from SUNY Potsdam’s Department of History recently met and presented research at the 2024 American Research Center in Egypt (ARCE) meeting, held in Pittsburgh. 

Associate Professor Dr. Steven Stannish and alumna Dr. Alexandra Morris ’12 took part in a well-attended panel discussion, “The Undiscovered Country: Disability in Ancient Egypt,” based on a forthcoming collection of essays they have both contributed to.  

While there, they met with alumnus and fellow Egyptologist Daniel Warne ’07, an experienced archaeologist who is now a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Memphis. Warne has worked at sites including the Faiyum Oasis and at Thebes in Egypt. 

In addition, Amy Wilson ’04, an associate archaeologist for Chronicle Heritage’s International Heritage team, presented her new research on an Egyptian stela dating to the mid-18th century, dedicated to the Viceroy of Nubia, Usersatet. She spoke about the stela’s archaeological context, its transcription, transliteration and her team’s other interesting findings. 

Amy Wilson '04 presents her research on an Egyptian stela dating to the mid-18th century.

Stannish’s discussion focused on his essay, titled “Grande Morbidezza: The Invention of Akhenaten’s Illness.” He has been working on the pharaoh Akhenaten and the Amarna Period for three decades, with most of his scholarship focusing on the traditional Egyptological narrative of Akhenaten’s reign and its aftermath. Beyond this focus, Stannish’s research has also extended to the religious reformation under Akhenaten, roles of women as depicted in early Christian and Greek historical texts, and a psychological portrait of Saint Augustine. He teaches courses in hieroglyphs and on the ancient Middle East and Mediterranean, among many others.  

Morris organized the session, and focused her comments on her forthcoming essay, “The Measure of a Man: Akhenaten, Tutankhamun, and the (Pseudo)science of Disability in Ancient Egypt,” which examines the historical receptions of the father and son pharaohs through the lenses of ableist and disablist biases. Morris was recently awarded her Ph.D. from Teesside University, in Middlesbrough, England, and her research interests include disability in the ancient world, ancient Egyptian and Greek art, medicine and religious practices, Ptolemaic Egypt, Alexander the Great, and creating more accessible and inclusive museum experiences for the disabled community. 

Support for the trip was provided by the Schwaller Fund for Faculty Development, endowed by President Emeritus Dr. John F. Schwaller (Hon. ’13) and Anne Schwaller. 

SUNY Potsdam’s Department of History offers a variety of courses ranging from the ancient world to the present, and from Africa and Asia to Europe and the Americas. The department’s faculty is comprised of inquisitive scholars, whose passion for history enlivens their classrooms. For more information, visit 

About SUNY Potsdam:  

Founded in 1816, The State University of New York at Potsdam is one of America’s first 50 colleges—and the oldest institution within SUNY. Now in its third century, SUNY Potsdam is distinguished by a legacy of pioneering programs and educational excellence. The College currently enrolls approximately 2,500 undergraduate and graduate students. Home to the world-renowned Crane School of Music, SUNY Potsdam is known for its challenging liberal arts and sciences core, distinction in teacher training and culture of creativity. To learn more, visit 

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