The Woman Who Would Be King
Kara Cooney, professor of Egyptian art and architecture at UCLA, speaks in conjunction with the publication of The Woman Who Would Be King, her engrossing new biography of Hatshepsut, the most powerful yet oft-forgotten Egyptian queen who ruled as king. Unlike Cleopatra, whose power and fame stemmed from her sexual exploits, Hatshepsut obtained her power through quiet calculation, ultimately reigning for 15 years not as queen, but as co-king—a pharaoh in her own right. And yet, Hatshepsut’s legacy as king was threatened by a damnatio memoriae that included a literal scratching out of her hieroglyphic name on stones and temples, and many of her reliefs were defaced or reassigned to earlier male pharaohs. Cooney’s biography is an incredible testament to Hatshepsut’s legacy, and a powerful look at female ambition.
A book signing follows the talk.