The history of ancient Egypt has long been an object of great interest for mankind. As we discussed in class, since the fourth century B.C. when Herodotus first described Egypt in his narrative, “The Histories”, people from all over the world have been fascinated by the large pyramids and monuments rising from the Giza Plateau. Although scientists and archaeologists have been studying this region since the time of Napoleon’s rule, and have a very accurate idea of Egyptian history and the building of the pyramids, there are still plenty of myths and conspiracies surrounding them that are largely perpetuated by popular culture and media.
The idea that ancient aliens and lost civilizations assisted the Egyptians in the building of the pyramids is not a new one. Although these “theories” began in the 18th and 19th centuries, they have been elevated in modern culture through television and movies to their own genre of science fiction. For example, in “Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull”, although it is not centered around Egyptian history, the film shows Indiana Jones discovering ancient aliens behind the construction of great archaeological sites. The second movie in the “Transformers” series also shows that that the Earth was visited by extraterrestrial beings and the pyramids were built by them as clues to their history and mysterious knowledge. In addition, films such as “The Mummy” emphasize mystic origins and curses of the pyramids, and documentaries shown on the History Channel and Discovery Channel even discuss the potential of unknown origins and lost civilizations. These movies and shows are so popular in today’s media that the fictional ideas continue to be adapted into new versions and plot lines. All of this enhances the myths and mysteries of the building of the pyramids and the architectural abilities of the ancient Egyptians.
The main issue surrounding these theoretical claims is that conspiracy theorists believe that the scientific findings are fake, and are being used to cover up what actually happened in the history of ancient Egypt. These conspiracies are then shown to the public who, without any prior knowledge of scientific facts, readily believe these ideas. The ideas are then picked up by popular media and expanded upon even more. Archaeologists, continue to study the pyramids and publish actual evidence of the pyramids’ construction, but because of the nature of popular culture, the pyramidiot’s ideas will most likely never be completely eliminated from public opinion.