The Oxford Handbook of the Archaeology of Ritual and Religion

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The Oxford Handbook of the Archaeology of Ritual and Religion provides a comprehensive overview by period and region of the relevant archaeological material in relation to theory, methodology, definition, and practice. Although, as the title indicates, the focus is upon archaeological investigations of ritual and religion, by necessity ideas and evidence from other disciplines are also included, among them anthropology, ethnography, religious studies, and history. The Handbook covers a global span - Africa, Asia, Australasia, Europe, and the Americas - and reaches from the earliest prehistory (the Lower and Middle Palaeolithic) to modern times. In addition, chapters focus upon relevant themes, ranging from landscape to death, from taboo to water, from gender to rites of passage, from ritual to fasting and feasting. Written by over sixty specialists, renowned in their respective fields, the Handbook presents the very best in current scholarship, and will serve both as a comprehensive introduction to its subject and as a stimulus to further research.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Editor Insoll has certainly been thorough in compiling this massive tome on the state of research on ritual and religion in archaeology...Sophisticated in method and theory."--CHOICE

"Whether this volume is approached as an encyclopedic compendium, a casual read to be dipped into from time to time, an archaeological treasure trove, or even as a challenge to some belief system, it is most assuredly an intellectual feast.... This is a truly impressive work of scholarship that will have a very long shelf life."--Thomas E. Emerson, American Journal of Archaeology

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780199232444
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press
  • Publication date: 1/13/2012
  • Series: Oxford Handbooks Series
  • Pages: 1136
  • Product dimensions: 7.10 (w) x 9.90 (h) x 2.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Timothy Insoll is Professor of Archaeology at the University of Manchester.

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Table of Contents

Introduction: Ritual and Religion in Archaeological Perspective, Timothy Insoll
I. Elements and Expression
1. Monumentality, Chris Scarre
2. Landscape, Randi Haaland & Gunnar Haaland
3. Water, Terje Oestigard
4. Fire, Anders Kaliff
5. Myth and Folklore, Amy Gazin-Schwartz
6. Cosmogony, Terje Oestigard
7. Death, Tim Taylor
8. Taboo, Nicky Milner
9. The Many Dimensions of Ritual, Marc Verhoeven
10. Personhood and the Body, Chris Fowler
11. Sacrifice, Timothy Insoll
12. Ideology, Randall McGuire & Reinhard Bernbeck
13. Feasting and Fasting, Michael Dietler
14. Gender and Religion in Archaeology, Sarah Milledge Nelson
15. Archaeologies of the Senses, Yannis Hamilakis
16. Syncretism and Religious Fusion, Timothy Clack
17. Technology, Olivier P. Gosselain
18. Rites of Passage, Paul Garwood
19. The Archaeology of Contemporary Conflict, Zoe Crossland
20. Rock Art, Religion and Ritual, David S. Whitley
II. Prehistoric European Ritual and Religion
21. Religion and Ritual in the Lower and Middle Palaeolithic, Paul Pettitt
22. Religion and Ritual in the Upper Palaeolithic, Paul Bahn
23. The Mesolithic, Chantal Conneller
24. Ritual and Religion in the Neolithic, Julian Thomas
25. Fire, Earth, Water: An Elemental Cosmography of the European Bronze Age, Joanna Bruck
26. The Iron Age, Jody Joy
III. Religion and Ritual in World Prehistory
27. Sub-Saharan Africa, Timothy Insoll
28. The Prehistory of Religion in China, Lukas Nickel
29. The Archaeology of Religion and Ritual in the Prehistoric Japanese Archipelago, Simon Kaner
30. Ritual and Religion in Southeast Asia, Charles Higham
31. Historicising Cosmologies in Australia and Papua New Guinea (Historicising Cosmologies in Australia and Papua New Guinea, Bruno David
32. Pacific and New Zealand, Paul Rainbird
33. Walking Upside-Down and Backwards: Art and Religion in the Ancient Caribbean, Peter Roe
34. Recognizing Religion in Mesoamerican Archaeology: Maya, Rosemary Joyce
35. Aztecs, Michael E. Smith
36. Inca, Kevin Lane
37. Moche Religion, Jeffrey Quilter
38. North America: Pueblos, Kelley Hays-Gilpin
39. North America: Eastern Woodlands, James Vernon Knight
40. The North American Northwest Coast Religious System: Coastal Northwest, Roy L. Carlson
41. Ritual and Archaeological Visibility in the Far Northeast of North America, Brian Robinson
IV. Religion and Cult of the Old World
42. Prehistoric Religions in the Aegean, Colin Renfrew
43. Ancient Greece, Julia Kindt
44. Etruscan Ritual and Religion, Tom Rasmussen
45. Egypt, Anna Stevens
46. Rome: Imperial and Local Religions, Richard Hingley
47. Maltese Prehistoric Religion, Caroline Malone & Simon Stoddart
48. Mesopotamia, Michael J. Seymour
49. Retrieving the Supernatural: Ritual and Religion in the Prehistoric Levant, Marc Verhoeven
50. Iran, Daniel Potts
51. Anatolia, Karina Croucher
52. Old Norse and Germanic Religion, Anders Andren
53. Pre-Christian Practices in the Anglo-Saxon World, Martin Welch
54. The Archaeology of Baltic Religions, Tonno Jonuks
V. Archaeology of World Religions
55. The Archaeology of Ritual and Religion in Ancient Israel and the Levant, and the Origins of Judaism, Aaron A. Burke
56. The Archaeology of Judaism from the Persian Period to the Sixth Century AD, James F. Strange
57. Archaeology of Hinduism, Namita Sugandhi & Kathleen Morrison
58. Buddhism, Robin Coningham
59. Christianity, Sam Turner
60. Islam, Andrew Petersen
VI. Archaeology of Indigenous and New Religions
61. Shamanism, Neil Price
62. Animism and Totemism, Timothy Insoll
63. Neo-Shamanism: Pagan and 'Neo-Shamanic' Interactions with Archaeology, Jenny Blain
64. Druidism and Neo-Paganism, Aleks Pluskowski
65. Ancestor Cults, Timothy Insoll
66. Divine Kings, Pierre de Maret

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