Ancient Egypt Teaches Us a Thing or Two About Modern Politics in National Geographic’s ‘The Good Kings’ [REVIEW]

Statues of Ramses II at the entrance to the main temple at Abu Simbel in Nubia. (Photo courtesy Canva)

Every time I visit the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City, which quite literally has so much to see you can spend days wandering around within its labyrinthine halls, I inevitably find my way to the Sackler Wing to stare at the pharaonic Temple of Dendur which was built by Caesar Augustus in 10 B.C. in Lower Nubia. While it is relatively small compared to, say, the Pyramids of Giza, it is still the closest I have ever gotten to actually going to Egypt. And yet I am always compelled to visit it, possibly because I am fascinated by the history, power, architecture, artistry, and mythology of the Egyptian culture. After all, whether you’re an avid Bible reader or merely a fan of classic films like The Ten Commandments, the foundations of our faith all seem to lead back to ancient Egypt. Thankfully, I’m not alone in my fascination with this culture. UCLA’s Professor Kara Cooney is also a “recovering Egyptologist,” and in her latest book for National Geographic, she pulls back the curtain on five of The Good Kings to examine their power and how it continues to touch our lives even now.

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