Saturday, August 26, 2017

The Epic of Gilgamesh: With A Guest Appearance By One Of My Professors

I just watched this lecture, and it was a rocking good time, I must say. Gilgamesh and Enkidu were a pair of hell-raising, head-turning MFs around 4,000 years ago back in Babylonia way. It was all very nice, but along the way I got a considerable shock. I knew one of the professors featured in the video.

Dr. Irene Winter is one of the three commenting professors at the end of the lecture. She shows up at 1:18 in the time counter. I took a class that she taught at Queens College of the City University of New York in 1973 called "Art of the Ancient Near East." (My undergraduate degree is in Art History, from Queens.) She was at Queens from 1971 to 1976. After that she moved around a couple of times before coming to rest at Harvard, where she has been a so-and-so Emerita Professor of Archaeology for some time now.

It's nice to see that she has made a success of academia, which is a very tough nut to crack. Listening to her speak on this video it is easy to recall her voice as a very beautiful and very enthusiastic young professor in the early 1970s. She was born in 1940, so when she taught my class she was only thirty-three-years-old, and I can tell you that she was really something. She was vivacious and charming, ridiculously lucid, and the brightest light in any room at all.

By that time she had been studying and traveling around the Middle East for some time, and she had a very interesting wardrobe, featuring vests and jackets and accessories from Libya to Afghanistan. Many people are shy to wear that kind of thing, but she wasn't shy about it at all. All very tastefully done, she'd wear one item at a time in combination with other more conventional items of  subdued colors, like earth tones or grays.

She's eight years older than me, which makes her seventy-seven this year. The video seems very recent, from mentions of ISIS in the city of Mosel in Iraq. I think that she looks and sounds great, and it sure was great to see her after all of this time. Good luck, Professor Winter, and God bless. Your success is a blessing to me, and I appreciate the gift.

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