Barry John Kemp, CBE, FBA is an English archaeologist and Egyptologist. He is Professor Emeritus of Egyptology at the University of Cambridge and directing excavations at Amarna in Egypt. His widely renowned book Ancient Egypt: Anatomy of a Civilisation is a core text of Egyptology and many Ancient History courses.
Barry Kemp graduated at the University of Liverpool in 1962. The next year, he became a Lecturer at the University of Cambridge and later became a Professor there. From 1977 until 2008, he has been the director of excavation and archaeological survey at Amarna for the Egypt Exploration Society. In 1990, Kemp was elected a Fellow of Wolfson College, Cambridge. He was Professor of Egyptology at the University of Cambridge until his retirement in 2007. In 2008, he became a Fellow of the McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research. Professor Kemp continues his research of the Amarna Period of ancient Egypt as director of the Amarna Project and secretary of the Amarna Trust.
He has also contributed to many highly regarded and widely used Egyptology texts, including Civilisations of the Ancient Near East, edited by Jack Sasson. He is a co-author of Bruce Trigger's Ancient Egypt: A Social History, which incorporates the work of many leading Egyptologists and addresses recent trends in the subject. Kemp states to be interested in developing a holistic picture of Ancient Egyptian society rather than focussing on the elite culture that dominates the archaeological record: "This holistic approach involves explaining the present appearance of the site in terms of all the agencies at work..."