July 8, 2011 — Richard Handler, an anthropology professor in the University of Virginia's College of Arts & Sciences, delivered the keynote speech to an international conference on "Materiality, Memory and Cultural Heritage" held in Istanbul, Turkey, in May. His talk focused on the history of 20th-century anthropology's study of culture and how it relates to materiality and memory.
Handler, along with University College London professor Charles Stewart and Bogazici University professor Ayfer Bartu Candan, spoke during the final plenary session on May 28.
The Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey funded Handler's visit. Sevil Baltali Tirpan, assistant professor of anthropology from Istanbul Technical University and organizing committee chair of the conference, wrote in an email, "His presence at the conference and his excellent keynote address were very much appreciated by the intellectual community in this part of the world."
Organized by Istanbul Technical University and Yeditepe University, the conference included scholarly papers in the fields of anthropology, archaeology and history. In 20 sessions over the conference, scholars from all around the world discussed their work on the meanings and management of ancient sites, monuments and objects from different social spaces and sectors.