At the moment at the Great North Museum, The Extraordinary Gertrude Bell is a new exhibition drawn from the Gertrude Bell Archive at Newcastle University with significant loans from the British Museum, Imperial War Museum and others.
Gertrude was a remarkable woman who changed the course of history in terms of what she did as a woman as well as how the world, especially in relation to the Middle East, was conceived.
This is a good exhibition to visit to get a handle on her life and influence on the world stage. In relation to our project, we are interested in the countries of the Middle East that Gertrude explored and created. Syria, Iraq, Iran etc. as an archaeologist, diplomat, linguist, writer, mountaineer and explorer, Gertrude was active within these areas during the First World War. What did she find there? What were the people like, their culture? And how does this have a bearing on the present of the Middle East?