Archaeologists and historians are rapidly coming to the conclusion that, for most people, the past is a sort of theme park--and they want the themes to be familiar ones. "Everybody already thinks they know the story of Jesus," says [Paula] Fredricksen. "A truly ancient Jesus is just too different for audiences to deal with."
There is also a review of the "Petra: Lost City of Stone" exhibit in New York and an interview with museum curator Kenneth D.S. Lapatin about archaeological forgeries. Excerpt from the latter:
Forgery is closely linked to looting and it operates by many of the same mechanisms: the true origins of the object are necessarily erased, and fakes, like looted artifacts, often come on the art market with a false provenance. In my view, the only effective way to stop forgery, like looting, is not to try to cut off production, but rather to starve it, that is to say, to change the behavior, the desire, of consumers. But unlike the damage done by looters, that done by forgers is not irrevocable. A lost archaeological context can never be recovered, but a false antiquity can be removed from the corpus of genuine material. The damage can be undone.