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Dr Jason Hawkes

  • College positions:

    External Director of Studies in Archaeology

  • University positions:

    Affiliate Scholar, McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research Teaching Associate, Department of Archaeology

  • Subject:


PhD, Archaeology (University of Cambridge); MA, South Asian Studies (SOAS); BA, Archaeology and Anthropology (University of Durham)


Research interests

My research focusses on the relationships between religion and society, cultural and environmental interactions, and the development of urbanism in South Asia and neighbouring Himalayan, Southeast Asian and Indian Ocean regions during the ancient and medieval periods (c. 500 BCE to 1500 CE). I look at these topics through the examination of archaeological, architectural and sculptural remains in their landscape contexts; as well as through artefact analyses.My work is also concerned with historiographies of archaeological practice and the role of modern ideologies in the writing of Asian histories.

I am currently involved in fieldwork in Central India. Here, I am investigating the archaeological contexts of early land-grant charters, issued by the Gupta kings and their contemporaries, to develop a better understanding of the societal underpinnings and socio-economic impacts of a new cultural package of Hindu kingship that spread across South Asia during the early centuries CE.


Teaching interests

In addition to my specialism in South Asian archaeology and art, I am involved in teaching general archaeological method and theory, as well as comparative world archaeology.  Recently, I have also started to contribute to courses on the medieval globe and the relationship of South Asia to the Indian Ocean networks and emerging world economies.


Awards and prizes

Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries of London

Fellow of the Royal Asiatic Society



Hawkes, J., Abbas, R., Shete, G. & Willis, M. (2017) ‘A Newly Discovered Iron Age settlement at Chachondi, District Amravati, Maharashtra’, Puratattva, 46: 114-125.

Hawkes, J. (2016) ‘Religious Transformations in Vindhya Pradesh’. In U. Franke & V. Widorn eds., Contextualizing Material Culture in South and Central Asia in Pre-Modern Times. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 323-337.

Hawkes, J., & Abbas, R. (2016) ‘Copperplates in Context: Preliminary Investigation of the Study and Archaeological Settings of Land Grant Inscriptions’, Pratnatattva, 22: 41-71.

Hawkes, J., Abbas, R., & Willis, M. (2016) ‘Report of the Archaeological Survey of Chamak and its Surroundings, District Amaravati, Maharashtra’, Ancient Asia, 7: 1-7

Rabett, R., Ludgate, N., Stimpson, C., Hill, E., Hunt, C., Ceron, J., Farr, L., Morley, M., Reynolds, T., Zukswert, H., Simpson, D., Nyiri, B., Verhoeven, M., Appleby, J., Meneely, J., Phan, L., Dong, N-N., Lloyd-Smith, L., Hawkes, J., Blyth, A., & Nguyêń C. T. (2016) ‘Tropical Limestone Forest Resilience and late Pleistocene Foraging During MIS-2 in the Trang An Massif, Vietnam’, Quaternary International, 417: 1-20.

Hawkes, J. (2015) ‘Kingship, Buddhism and the Forging of a Region: Medieval Pilgrimage in West Nepal’, Room One Thousand [online], 3.

Hawkes, J. (2015) ‘Passage to India: Locating South Asia in the Indian Ocean world during the early medieval period’, Journal of Indian Ocean Archaeology, 10: 1-24.

Hawkes, J. & Wynne-Jones, S. (2015) ‘India in Africa: Trade Goods and Connections of the Late First Millennium’, Afriques [online], 6. URL:

Hawkes, J. (2014) ‘Bharhut as an Archaeological Area’. In D.K. Chakrabarti & M. Lal eds., History of Ancient India, Volume IV: Political History and Administration. New Delhi: Aryan Books, pp. 351-366.

Hawkes, J. (2014) ‘Chronological Sequences and the “Problem” of Early Medieval Settlement in India’, Puratattva, 44: 208-228.

Hawkes, J. (2014) ‘Finding the Early Medieval in South Asian Archaeology’, Asian Perspectives, 53(1): 53-96.

Hawkes, J. (2014) ‘One size does not fit all: Landscapes of Religious Change in Central India’, South Asian Studies, 30(1): 1-15.

Hawkes, J. & Wynne-Jones, S. (2014) ‘India in Africa’. In S. Sindbaek & A. Trakidakis eds., The World in the Viking Age. Roskilde: The Viking Ship Museum, p.64.

Hawkes, J., Alvey, B., Evans, C., Harward, T., & Kunwar, R. (2012) ‘Finding the Khasa Malla: Preliminary Investigations of the Surkhet Valley, West Nepal’, Ancient Nepal, 179: 1-14.

Hawkes, J. (2011) ‘A Re-assessment of the Buddhist Stupa Site of Bharhut’, Pragdhara, 19: 75-87.

Rabett, R., Appleby, J., Blyth, A., Farr, L., Gallou, A., Griffiths, T., Hawkes, J., et al. (2011) ‘Inland shell midden site-formation: Investigation of a Late Pleistocene to Early Holocene Island Shell Midden from Tràng An, Northern Vietnam’, Quaternary International, 239: 153-169.

Hawkes, J. (2010) ‘Bharhut and its Wider Regional Context’. In P. Callieri and L. Colliva eds., South Asian Archaeology 2007, BAR International Series 2133. Oxford: Archaeopress, pp. 133-143.

Hawkes, J. (2010) ‘Samian Ware’. In H. Cancik & H. Sneider eds., Brill’s New Pauly, Antiquity, Vol. 15. Leiden: Brill Publishers, col. 1043.

Hawkes, J. (2009) ‘The Wider Archaeological Contexts of the Buddhist Stupa Site of Bharhut’. In J. Hawkes & A. Shimada eds., Buddhist Stupas in South Asia: Recent Archaeological, Art Historical, and Historical Perspectives. Delhi: OUP, pp. 146-174.

Hawkes, J. & Shimada, A. (2009) ‘Approaches to the Study of Buddhist Stupas’. In J. Hawkes & A. Shimada eds., Buddhist Stupas in South Asia: Recent Archaeological, Art Historical, and Historical Perspectives. Delhi: OUP, pp. xi-xli.

Hawkes, J. & Shimada, A. eds. (2009) Buddhist Stupas in South Asia: Recent Archaeological, Art Historical, and Historical Perspectives. Delhi: Oxford University Press.

Hawkes, J. (2008) ‘Bharhut: A Re-Assessment’, South Asian Studies, 24: 1-14.

Hawkes, J. (In Press) ‘The Elephant in the Room: Archaeology and the Early Medieval Period in India’. In E. Myrdal ed., South Asian Archaeology 2014. New Delhi: Dev Publishers.

Hawkes, J., Abbas, R., Shete, G., and Willis, M. (In Press) ‘Iron Age Stratigraphy’. In L. Greaves and A. Hardy eds., South Asian Archaeology 2018. New Delhi: Dev Publishers.