On this page is information about...

Ma'at Tours Company

Its owner-operators

Who is Ma'at?







Ma'at Tours

Ma'at Tours is a part of Ma'at Productions, a partnership registered as a business in the state of Tasmania, Australia (Tasmanian Business Number BN01266706, Australian Business Number 75 435 058 144).

Ma'at Productions was founded in 1999 and has run many Ma'at Tours to Egypt in addition to presenting numerous academic Summer and Winter Schools, lectures and workshops, and dramatic and theatre performances. In 2011 we formed partnerships with two of Australia's leading performers to offer Actor's Bootcamp Oz workshops.

Ma'at Productions was invited to present a paper at the inaugural Borders & Crossings inter-disciplinary conference on travel writing and tourism studies held at the University of Melbourne in July 2008 on the topic Aliens at the Pyramids: Western Tourists in Egypt. We were also invited to present at the associated Melbourne Festival of Travel Writing.

Our latest lecture was at the Australian Historical Association's 2011 Regional Conference, History at the Edge on the topic: TANKS AND TUTANKHAMUN - When present and ancient past collide.


"We are with you every step of the way in Egypt."


Dr Michael R Jenkins

Ph.D., B.A., (Hons.), Dip.Ed., Grad.Dip.Ed.Stud.(Comp.Ed.)

Dr Michael R Jenkins is a graduate of the University of Tasmania. Having completed his Honours degree in Egyptian, Minoan, Mycenaean, Greek and Roman art and architecture he commenced studies for his Ph.D. in ancient art history. His thesis was examined at the University of Western Australia, the Boston Museum of Fine Arts, and the British Museum. Since the awarding of his doctorate in 1992, Dr Jenkins has focused his research in the areas of Ancient Egyptian history, architecture and art.

Dr Jenkins has travelled to Egypt on numerous occasions, including an extensive period of research partly sponsored by the Australian Academy of the Humanities in order to study Ramesses II's 'Battle of Qadesh' reliefs. His current work focuses on the history of Elephantine Island in Upper Egypt and has involved numerous seasons of field work in the Aswan region undertaking investigation of the local Old and Middle Kingdom tombs, the ruins of the ancient provincial capital of Abu (Elephantine), and the many rock carvings of the First Cataract region. He is also undertaking a project concerning the creation of a computer generated reconstruction of the 'lost temple' of Amenhotep III on Elephantine Island in collaboration with graduate students of information technology and systems at the University of Tasmania.

Dr Jenkins has presented occasional lectures and seminars at the Universities of Tasmania and Melbourne, and addressed the International Numismatic Congress (Brussels). He has facilitated workshops and seminars internationally. He has published numerous academic papers in the fields of Egyptology and numismatics in such internationally renowned journals as: Kmt (USA); The Journal of Egyptian Archaeology (London); The Bulletin of the Australian Centre for Egyptology (Sydney); The Athens Annals of Archaeology (Athens); and The Numismatic Chronicle (London). His work, 'Notes on the Tomb of Setka at Qubbet el-Hawa, Aswan' (BACE, Vol.11, pp.67f. (2000)), reports the findings of his archaeological investigation of a late-Old Kingdom period tomb and was published with the personal approval of Prof. Gaballa, the Secretary General of the Supreme Council of Antiquities (Cairo).

Dr Jenkins is currently the Tasmanian Qualifications Authority's Liaison and Development Officer, and a Post-doctoral Honorary Research Associate with the School of History and Classics at the University of Tasmania. He is a member of the International Association of Egyptologists (Munich), the Rundle Foundation for Egyptian Archaeology, and the Friends of the Tasmanian Museum & Art Gallery.

Ms Patricia Kempa

M.Ed.(Couns. & Dev.), B.A. (Hons.), Dip.Ed., M.A.C.E.L.

Ms Patricia Kempa graduated from the University of Sydney in 1984 with a degree of Bachelor of Arts (History) with Honours (English Literature), specialising in 19thC Romantic Literature, and in the transition from the ancient to the medieval world. A Diploma of Education followed and in 1998, she was awarded the degree of Master of Education from the University of Tasmania for Post-Graduate Studies in Counselling and Development. She has taught a variety of Humanities subjects to students ranging from Year 7 to 12 and, since 1995, has taught Drama, Performance and Personal Development to Year 11 and 12 students at Guilford Young College.

Studies pertinent to her Masters Degree related to the impact of genetics on behaviour, allied with her earlier reading of classical and medieval history, have led her to undertake investigations of the relationship between psychological and genetic disorders and peoples of our ancient past. Patricia has also made detailed studies in the areas of body image, self-perception, personal image, the image we project to others, and the latter's role in propaganda. She has a long-held fascination for the royal art of the Ancient Egyptian Amarna Period, its modern interpretation and our psychological reactions to such images.

Patricia began her involvement with theatre when she wrote her first play in 1976. Winning an original play competition, she produced and directed her own composition and developed an insatiable desire for directing drama.

Since coming to Hobart in 1992, she has been heavily involved with drama in education, directing ten musicals for Guilford Young College, including the Tasmanian Premiere of Jon English's "Paris", and Frank Wildhorn's "The Scarlet Pimpernel" at the Theatre Royal. She has also directed over thirty dramatic productions for the College, and was the College's Performing and Visual Arts Coordinator. She is now a Manager of Teaching and Learning. Patricia has directed "HAIR", "Brilliant Lies", "Falling from Grace", "An Inspector Calls" and "Copacabanna", all for the Hobart Repertory Theatre Society.

Patricia is a member of The Rundle Foundation for Egyptian Archaeology.

In 2005 she was honoured to receive a Tasmanian Quality Teaching Award from the Australian College of Educators.

Mr Peter Kempa graduated from the University of Tasmania in 2009 with the degree of Bachelor of Environmental Design. Peter has deferred enrolment in his Master of Architecture degree pending recovery from major spinal surgery. Peter's first overseas trip was with the Ma'at 2005 Tour. While this was an exciting experience for him, many participants commented on his courtesy, thoughtfulness and willingness to see to their individual needs. Peter has since visited Singapore on several occasions, as well as Malaysia. On Ma'at Tour's 2010 tour Peter led the group at several sites including the Temple of Hatshepsut at Deir el-Bahri and Saqqarah. Peter had undertaken studies of these sites as part of his Bachelor's degree and brought a new perspective to our investigation of these sites.


Who is Ma'at?

Ma'at is the name of the ancient Egyptian goddess of truth, justice, harmony, balance, and 'the right way' of conduct. She was the 'divine order of the cosmos', and at least from the New Kingdom period was given the title 'Daughter of Ra'.

In naming our company we felt that the goddess of 'the right way' was the ideal namesake for our operations.

Ma'at's name written in hieroglyphs The ostrich feather of Ma'at - the so-called 'Feather of Truth' - against which one's heart was weighed at the Final Judgement


In 2006 our group was lucky enough to receive special permission to enter the grounds of the Temple of Montu, nearby the main Karnak complex. A section of this structure was dedicated to Ma'at and is often referred to as the 'Temple of Ma'at' (see image below). Evidence suggests that while courts could be held in any temple, at times in the New Kingdom period this structure acted somewhat like a modern 'high court' where special hearings might be held. While the buildings are in a ruinous state, the opportunity to visit this special place - somewhere we had hoped to visit for two decades - was a personal highlight of our 2006 tour.