I am a lecturer for the Archaeology of the Near East at the Faculty of Archaeology. My teaching focuses on the archaeology of Mesopotamia, the development of early cities and states, and the archaeology of empires.
Leiden Archaeology Blog
I am a lecturer for the Archaeology of the Near East at the Faculty of Archaeology. My teaching focuses on the archaeology of Mesopotamia, the development of early cities and states, and the archaeology of empires. My research focus areas include: the study of the Assyrian empire and its capital cities, as well as the study of Near Eastern empires; connectivity in the Late Bronze Age Eastern Mediterranean; and the archaeology of play.
Monday to Friday
My PhD research is concerned with the study of the phenomenon of imperial capital creation and the archaeological study of imperial capital cities. Capital creation is the process of constructing monumental capitals in a new location or through a profound transformation of a pre-existing settlement. In my research I specifically focus on the creation of new capital cities in Assyria from the 14th century BCE until the fall of Assyria in 612 BCE. These cities include Kār-Tukultī-Ninurta, Kalḫu (Nimrud), Dur-Šarrukēn (Kh0rsabad), and Nineveh.
I have also done extensive research on the archaeology of play, both through the study of ancient play (e.g. ancient board games), as well as through the study of contemporary video games that deal with the past. As a founding member of the VALUE Foundation I have organized multiple events, conferences, workshops, and the Culture Arcade exhibition, utilizing video games for heritage and archaeological outreach. I have also published a number of papers on the topic of archaeology and video games.
Finally, I will be running the Past-at-Play Lab together with prof. dr. Sybille Lammes and dr. Angus Mol, an experimental project that focus on the study of the past in and as play. Specifically, we will be investigating how past civilizations have culturally expressed themselves in play, but also how contemporary games deal with the past as play.
I studied archaeology at the University of Athens, specializing in the Late Bronze Age Aegean archaeology. I pursued an MA in the Archaeology of the Near East in Leiden, where I studied the transitional period from the Mitanni to Middle Assyrian empire, focusing on changes in settlement patterns and agriculture. In September 2013 I started my PhD research on Assyrian capitals.
In 2015, together with other archaeologists from Leiden University we founded the VALUE project, now VALUE Foundation, a foundation that works on the crossroads of gaming and academia. Since 2018 I am working as a lecturer at the Faculty of Archaeology. In 2019, together with prof. dr. Sybille Lammes and dr. Angus Mol we were awarded the Snouck Hurgronje grant by the Leiden University Fund to run the Past-at-Play Lab project.
- Faculteit Archeologie
- World Archaeology
- Near Eastern
- Politopoulos A. (2018), Creating Imperial Capitals: From Aššur to Kār-Tukultī-Ninurta. In: Horejs B., Schwall, Christoph M.V., Luciani M., Ritter, M., Guidetti M., Salisbury R.B,. Höflmayer, F., Bürge, T. (Eds.) Proceedings of the International Congress on the Archaeology of the Ancient Near East Proceedings of the 10th ICAANE 2016, University of Vienna. Wiesbaden: Harrassowitz Verlag.
- Kloosterman A., Ariese C.E., Boom K.H.J., Mol A.A.A., Politopoulos A. & Vandemeulebroucke V.I.C.M. (4 May 2017), Clubje: Wij zijn dol op academisch gamen. Interviewed by Anoushka Kloosterman for Leids Universitair Weekblad Mare(Clubje) [interview].
- Mol A.A.A., Politopoulos A. & Ariese C.E. (2017), “From the Stone Age to the Information Age”: History and Heritage in Sid Meier’s Civilization VI, Advances in Archaeological Practice 5(2): 214-219.
- Ariese C.E., Boom K.H.J., Copplestone T., Mol A.A.A. & Politopoulos A. (2017), A Singleplayer, Strategic and Atmospheric, Indie Action-Adventure with Multiplayer, a Great Soundtrack and Mostly Positive Reviews: Anatomy of an Archaeogame.
- Mol A.A.A., Ariese C.E., Boom K.H.J. & Politopoulos A. (Eds.) (2017), The Interactive Past: Archaeology, Heritage, and Video Games. Leiden: Sidestone Press.
- Mol A.A.A., Ariese C.E., Boom K.H.J. & Politopoulos A. (2017), Wonders of Civilization: Heritage Preservation and Presentation in Sid Meier’s Civilization Series.
- Politopoulos A., Ariese C.E., Boom K.H.J., Copplestone T. & Mol A.A.A. (2017), Wonders of Civilization: Representation of Monuments in Sid Meier’s Civilization Series.
- Ariese C.E., Boom K.H.J., Politopoulos A. & Mol A.A.A. (2016), Conference: Interactive Pasts - Exploring the intersections of archaeology and video games. [other]
- Mol A.A.A., Ariese C.E., Boom K.H.J. & Politopoulos Aris (2016), Video Games in Archaeology: Enjoyable but Trivial?, SAA Archaeological Record 16(5): 11-15.
- Ariese C.E., Boom K.H.J., Mol A.A.A., Politopoulos & A. (21 May 2015), VALUE: Videogames and Archaeology at Leiden University. Digital Heritage 2015: 3D in knowledge production 21 5 2015-22 5 2015 [conference poster].
- Politopoulos A., Ariese C.E., Boom K.H.J. & Mol A.A.A. (30 April 2015), VALUE: Videogames and Archaeology at Leiden UnivErsity. [blog entry].
- Ariese C.E., Boom K.H.J., Mol A.A.A. & Politopoulos A. (2015), VALUE | Facebook [blog entry].
- Ariese C.E., Boom K.H.J., Mol A.A.A. & Politopoulos A. (2015), VALUE (@value_project) | Twitter [blog entry].
- Ariese C.E., Boom K.H.J., Mol A.A.A. & Politopoulos A. (2015), VALUE | Videogames and Archaeology in Leiden UnivErsity. [website]
- Politopoulos A. (18 December 2014), Archaeogaming at the University of Leiden (Guest Post!) [blog entry].
- Politopoulos A. (3 April 2014), Mirroring Gods in Theros: conquering mythological stereotypes in Magic the Gathering: Trevor Owens [blog entry].
- Politopoulos. A. (2014), Imperial Capital Creation in Ancient Near East. Archaeology in Transition Symposium 25 9 2014-26 9 2014 [conference poster].
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