Josh Cannon

Scholar Mentor

Josh advises students who are interested in applying for scholarships, fellowships, and other awards. While he enthusiastically supports students on any award, Josh is particularly focused on helping students interested in National Science Foundations (NSF) awards, the Boren Scholarship and Fellowship, the Benjamin A. Gilman Scholarship, the Udall Undergraduate Scholarship, and the Critical Languages Scholarship. He is also a co-chair of the Pitt Veterans Affinity Group.

Josh was born in Jefferson City (Green County, PA) and raised in Pittsburgh. He joined the Marine Corps after high school and served for 5 years as an Arabic Cryptologic Linguist, including 2 tours in Iraq, and obtained the rank of sergeant. He then enrolled in the University of Pittsburgh, majored in Anthropology and Linguistics, and graduated with a Bachelors of Philosophy degree from the Honors College. Immediately after graduating, he went to the University of Chicago to pursue a PhD in the Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations Department.

Josh is married and has three boys. He was an assistant coach for the University of Chicago wrestling team and is a big fan of amateur wrestling, boxing, and mixed martial arts. He will enthusiastically debate you on who would win in any imaginary head-to-head match-up in these sports. If this is done while smoking cigars, all the better!

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    Education & Training

  • PhD (Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations), University of Chicago
  • MA (Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations), University of Chicago
  • BPhil (Anthropology and Linguistics), University of Pittsburgh
  • Diploma (Arabic), Defense Language Institute
Recent Publications

2022 - (in press) “The Origin and Impetus behind the Hittite AN.TAḪ.ŠUM Festival” in Theo van den Hout and Petra Goedgeburre (eds) ‘Acts of the 31st, International Congress of Hittitology’, Oriental Institute, Chicago.

2019 - “When the Giant Falls: Endurance and Adaptation at Çadır Höyük in the Context of the Hittite Empire and Its Collapse”,  Journal of Field Archaeology 44/1, 19-39 (w/Sharon Steadman, Jennifer Ross, Ben Arbuckle, and Sarah Adcock).

2017 - “Semi-automated Detection of Looting in Afghanistan Using Multispectral Imagery and Principal Component Analysis”, Antiquity 91, 1344-1355 (w/Tony Lauricella, Scott Branting, and Emily Hammer).

Research Interests

Josh is an archaeologist and he has excavated in Chicago, Ithaca NY, Cyprus, and Turkey. His main research so far has been a study of the Hittites, a people who moved into Anatolia (modern Turkey) sometime before the beginning of the 2nd Millennium BC. For his dissertation, Josh explored the material culture of the Hittites and the indigenous people with whom they interacted when they settled in Central Anatolia. With a focus on pottery and the use of 3D scanning and Geographic Information Systems (GIS), Josh detailed how settlement patterns and social relations changed with the arrival of the Hittites and how these changes continued to develop throughout the 2nd Millennium BC.

How a veteran teaches about ancient wars at Pitt

3D Scanning with the Carnegie Museum of Natural History

NSF GRFP Program - 20212022

Pitt Veteran Affinity Work