Predicated on the infamous looting of the Baghdad Museum during the first week of the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003, Tripp Reed’s telefilm Manticore (2005) is a "Babylonian" text that reverses the events and politics upon which its scenario is based—the destruction of antiquities in wartime—into a liberation story. In the film, U.S. Marines save Iraq from a legendary beast unleashed from its own archaeological past by a megalomaniacal terrorist claiming Babylonian ancestry. Wedding the (neo)imperialist rhetoric of archaeological stewardship in the "cradle of civilization" with military adventure, Manticore exemplifies how SF as a symbolic medium frequently capitalizes on (and thereby exposes) archaeology's latent complicity with geopolitical activity. The notion of the "archaeology-military complex" in Iraq—the absorption of archaeologists into military structures—provides an important critical context for the investigation of the ways values like heritage and stewardship promote Western interventions in the Middle East, activities that in turn provide diegetic materials for SF narratives
Liverpool Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.
If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.
To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.