Why Archaeology is Sexy!

The Shadowy Horses coverGuest blog by Susanna Kearsley, author of The Shadowy Horses

OK, I have to say that in my time as a museum worker I did mingle with some archaeologists, and none of them looked anything at all like David Fortune, the hero of my book The Shadowy Horses (which has just been re-issued by Sourcebooks). In fact, the archaeologists I know would roll their eyes if I suggested that their work, with all its detailed methodology and scientific focus, might be sexy. But there’s no denying that, in many people’s minds, it is.

When I discussed this with a couple of the women working at my local library, they had a few suggestions why it was that archaeology—and archaeologists—might make us swoon. Indiana Jones aside (because we all know that real archaeologists don’t run around in fedoras, with bullwhips, don’t we? Don’t we?), the fact remains that archaeology is all about exploring, and that carries the potential for adventure. Explorers, by nature, are brave and adaptable and self-reliant, all swoon-worthy traits in a man.

Sure, they may only be exploring as far as Ohio , but many digs take them away to exotic locations like Greece, South America, or underwater beneath the Black Sea. These are women and men who aren’t fettered to desks in a 9 to 5 job. They have freedom to travel, to chart their own course (well, as long as they get back in time to mark papers at their universities, that is…) But they’re not tied down to convention the same way that, say, an accountant might be. And that, too, can be sexy.

Besides which, they’re smart. They’re intelligent. And when you combine the appeal of a man who can debate morphological projectile point typology and the classification of flaked stone tools, with the rugged allure of a man who spends much of his day working out of doors, that’s a potent mix for any romance hero.

Maybe the real reason, though, was the final one given to me by the women who worked at the library. “Well,” they said, after some thought, “archaeologists work in the dirt. They get dirty, and sweaty.”

I wasn’t quite following. “And?”

“And that means,” said the women, “they might have to take off their shirts.”

Enough said.

Why do you think we think archaeology’s sexy?

GIVEAWAY: 1 print copy of The Shadowy Horses is up for grabs! Open to US and CAN readers. Enter by leaving a comment telling us why archaeology or archaeologists are sexy! The last day to enter is October 19, 2012. Good luck!

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23 thoughts on “Why Archaeology is Sexy!”

  1. Hi Susannah,
    I so enjoy your books. 🙂
    I’d have to say that Archaeology sexy because it’s such a disciplined line of work. So much research and patience and we all know how sexy it is when a man is very patient and spends endless time researching. 🙂
    Carol L.

  2. Sexy archaeologists? Oh yeah, they are that.

    I think it is a cross between the brains and working outdoors. I have to agree with the fact that they just might have to take their shirts off…. 😉

  3. Thanks for a fun post and giveaway! I think that archaeologists are sexy b/c they are “field” nerds 🙂 They are smart, dedicated and yet are outside of an office working.

  4. I agree with the title of this blog post. Archaeology is sexy! I like the idea of uncovering historical artifacts and learning about the past. It’s fascinating and I think of all the stories a single piece can tell.

  5. After reading “The Shadowy Horses” I’m on the hunt for my own sexy (Scottish) Archaeologist! Strong and physically capable, mixed with an intelligence in history and Latin (the origin of the Romance languages ;). Calluses and Brains, sign me up!

  6. I love the Shadowy Horses and I can give 1 top reason why archaeology is sexy – Indiana Jones. Oh, and someone that has to be that careful with their hands, well, fill in the rest…

  7. They’re sexy because they’re adventurous, a bit rugged, and have an interest in history and old objects and things. Dream man right there!

    (ps, despite the uk email I live in the US)

  8. Archeaologists are sexy because of the adventure they get to live every day. I’m sure the job can be boring as they sift through stacks of research but then they get out into the field and discover new things, the uncover myths, they get to actually search for all the answers to the past. I’d love to be out there disovering with my very own Indiana Jones…except I’d like him to look a little more like Channing Tatum and a lot less like Harrison Ford (he’s a bit old for me)

  9. Thanks for the giveaway!!

    I think archaeologists because they are using their brains & bodies. Archaeology requires such patience and discipline, how can that not be incredibly sexy!! Sans shirts is always a bonus!! 🙂


  10. Decades ago…when I took courses in college regarding the ancient world and ancient history the male students were not sexy. But the professors were sexy regardless of age or paunchy tummies. It was their knowledge and demeanor that was so attractive. Archeologists and historians exude a demeanor that they are the keepers of knowledge of past life. For years I taught sociology classes. Current social issues – abuse, drug use, single parenthood – are not sexy

  11. Archeologists are sexy because they roll around in the dirt, they can carry on an intelligent conversation and they know how to use tools. I am getting hot and bothered just thinking about it. Throw in a Scottish accent, and what more could a girl want?

  12. Archaeologists are sexy for the same reason librarians are sexy: they are trained to DISCOVER. Their curiosity and patience are seemingly boundless and they LOVE the challenge of the search and the thrill of discovery. Combining these characteristics with the obvious need for physical fitness, archaeologists seem like the perfect choice for a true romantic hero.

  13. Archaeologists are sexy because smart and brainy is so attractive. They also have this sense of adventure about them. You also can’t go wrong with someone that’s patient and willing to attend to every detail – especially if they apply that other activities besides digging up the past.

  14. Hi Susanna,
    I really enjoy your books and imagine the researching must be a blast!
    Archaeologists are sexy because they are intelligent, great story tellers and the possibility of a tan, muscular upper body is a real plus too.

  15. I think it’s sexy because an archeologist’s job is to uncover the past. I think of archeologists as “Detectives of the Past”, recovering knowledge that’s been lost over the centuries.

    Thanks for the giveaway.

  16. Top reasons why archaeology is sexy. 1. Knowledge is sexy. 2. Knowledge is sexier when it is dug up from the ground. 3. Knowledge is even more sexier when it is dug up from the ground by a tanned skin, buff book lifting man who also thinks archaeology is sexy.

  17. It’s all about what could be, the teaser, bits and pieces of history tempting the imagination and challenging logic to piece it all together. Just giving you a hint, showing a bit, then leaving you guessing and looking for more….

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