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Wilfrid Laurier University Faculty of Arts
October 23, 2017
Canadian Excellence
Dr. Debra Foran

Dr. Debra Foran

Assistant Professor

Contact Information
Phone: 519 884 0710 ext.4759
Fax: 519 883 0991
Office Location: R106G - 202 Regina Street
Office Hours: Fall term Monday 2:00-4:00pm
Academic Background

Honours BA in Near Eastern Archaeology, Wilfrid Laurier University (1993)
MA in Near Eastern Studies, University of Toronto (1995)
PhD in Near and Middle Eastern Civilizations, University of Toronto (2003)

License in Mediaeval Studies, Pontifical Institute for Mediaeval Studies (2005)


Research Interests:

My research focuses on pilgrimage and trade during the Late Byzantine period (5th to 8th centuries CE) in Jordan. I am fascinated by the role that landscape played in the religious and economic development of certain sites in this region. With this question in mind, I will be starting a new field project at the site of Khirbat al-Mukhayyat in the summer of 2014. The site is commonly associated with nearby Mount Nebo, the biblical site associated with the death and burial of Moses. In addition to overseeing this field project, I am also working on the final publication for Tell Madaba, a project that I have been directing since 2006. This project is part of a larger regional research effort (that includes Khirbat al-Mukhayyat) designed to investigate the development of centralized institutions and state-ordered societies in central Jordan.

Dr. Foran is President of the American Schools of Oriental Research in Canada.

Additional Information


2013 “Madaba Before Mesha: The Earliest Settlements on the City’s West Acropolis.” Studies in the History and Archaeology of Jordan 11: 211-219.

2012 “Fifteen Years of Research in Madaba – The City of Mosaics.” ACOR Newsletter. Vol. 24.1

2011 “Byzantine and Early Islamic Jaffa.” Chapter 9 in The History and Archaeology of Jaffa I. Edited by M. Peilstöcker and A. A. Burke. The Cotsen Institute of Archaeology at UCLA.

2009 “The Mosaic Floors: Construction Techniques and Design.” Chapter 4 in Excavations at Tell Jawa, Jordan, Volume IV: The Early Islamic House. by P.M. Michèle Daviau. Culture and History of the Ancient Near East 11/4, Leiden: Brill.

2007 “Investigating 5,000 Years of Urban History: The Tall Madaba Archaeological Project” in Crossing Jordan: North American Contributions to the Archaeology of Jordan. T. Levy, M. Daviau, R. Younker and M Shaer (eds.). Pp.143 – 152. London: Equinox. (co-authored with T. Harrison and A. Graham)

2007 “A Large Urban Residence from Late Byzantine and Early Islamic Mādabā.” Studies in the History and Archaeology of Jordan 9: 113-122.

2005 “The Stylites of Nebo: A Syrian Tradition in the Highlands of Central Jordan.” Journal of the Canadian Society for Syriac Studies 5: 68-81

2004 “The Tall Madaba Archaeological Project; Preliminary Report of the 2002 Field Season.” Annual of the Department of Antiquities of Jordan 48: 79-96. (co-authored with T. Harrison)

2003 “Tell Madaba.” American Journal of Archaeology 107.3: 464-466. (co-authored with T. Harrison)

2003 “The Tall Madaba Archaeological Project; Preliminary Report of the 1998-2000 Field Seasons.” Annual of the Department of Antiquities of Jordan 47: 129-148. (contributor)

2002 “The 2002 Excavations on the Madaba West Acropolis.” ACOR Newsletter 14.2: 6-8. (co-authored with T. Harrison)