In The Garden Of The Gods

Author: Eva Anagnostou-Laoutides
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 131711776X
Size: 26.12 MB
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Examining the evolution of kingship in the Ancient Near East from the time of the Sumerians to the rise of the Seleucids in Babylon, this book argues that the Sumerian emphasis on the divine favour that the fertility goddess and the Sun god bestowed upon the king should be understood metaphorically from the start and that these metaphors survived in later historical periods, through popular literature including the Epic of Gilgameš and the Enuma Eliš. The author’s research shows that from the earliest times Near Eastern kings and their scribes adapted these metaphors to promote royal legitimacy in accordance with legendary exempla that highlighted the role of the king as the establisher of order and civilization. As another Gilgameš and, later, as a pious servant of Marduk, the king renewed divine favour for his subjects, enabling them to share the 'Garden of the Gods'. Seleucus and Antiochus found these cultural ideas, as they had evolved in the first millennium BCE, extremely useful in their efforts to establish their dynasty at Babylon. Far from playing down cultural differences, the book considers the ideological agendas of ancient Near Eastern empires as having been shaped mainly by class — rather than race-minded elites.

Cultural Perceptions Of Violence In The Hellenistic World

Author: Michael Champion
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1351803301
Size: 68.67 MB
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Violence had long been central to the experience of Hellenistic Greek cities and to their civic discourses. This volume asks how these discourses were shaped and how they functioned within the particular cultural constructs of the Hellenistic world. It was a period in which warfare became more professionalised, and wars increasingly ubiquitous. The period also saw major changes in political structures that led to political and cultural experimentation and transformation in which the political and cultural heritage of the classical city-state encountered the new political principles and cosmopolitan cultures of Hellenism. Finally, and in a similar way, it saw expanded opportunities for cultural transfer in cities through (re)constructions of urban space. Violence thus entered the city through external military and political shocks, as well as within emerging social hierarchies and civic institutions. Such factors also inflected economic activity, religious practices and rituals, and the artistic, literary and philosophical life of the polis.

Gods Demons And Symbols Of Ancient Mesopotamia

Author: Jeremy A. Black
Publisher:
ISBN:
Size: 56.87 MB
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Ancient Mesopotamia was a rich, varied and highly complex culture whose achievements included the invention of writing and the development of sophisticated urban society. This book offers an introductory guide to the beliefs and customs of the ancient Mesopotamians, as revealed in their art and their writings between about 3000 B.C. and the advent of the Christian era. Gods, goddesses, demons, monsters, magic, myths, religious symbolism, ritual, and the spiritual world are all discussed in alphabetical entries ranging from short accounts to extended essays. Names are given in both their Sumerian and Akkadian forms, and all entries are fully cross-referenced. A useful introduction provides historical and geographical background and describes the sources of our knowledge about the religion, mythology and magic of "the cradle of civilisation."

Wounded Warriors

Author: Robert C. Vallers
Publisher: Potomac Books, Inc.
ISBN: 1612345824
Size: 42.34 MB
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Robert C. Vallieres struggled to find his ônew normalö when he returned home after serving in the military. An accident in Kuwait left him suffering from traumatic brain injury (TBI) internal injuries, leaving him in constant pain. After clinics, bottles of painkillers, and behavior modification pills, hope seemed to vanish. Then a local weekly newspaper ad caught his eye: a bird-watching trip to see raptors in the mountains of New Hampshire. An Emily Dickinson poem that states, ôHope is the thing with feathers that perches in the soul, and sings the tuneùwithout the words, and never stops at all,ö sprang to his mind. Wounded Warriors is VallieresÆs story of self-healing from crippling ôinvisibleö wounds through the help of birds. The problems of TBI and post-traumatic stress disorder do not have definitive solutions. His story of recovery offers a winged hope to thousands of military personnel who suffer these physical and mental battles.

Revolutionizing A World

Author: Mark Altaweel
Publisher: UCL Press
ISBN: 1911576631
Size: 16.15 MB
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This book investigates the long-term continuity of large-scale states and empires, and its effect on the Near East’s social fabric, including the fundamental changes that occurred to major social institutions. Its geographical coverage spans, from east to west, modern-day Libya and Egypt to Central Asia, and from north to south, Anatolia to southern Arabia, incorporating modern-day Oman and Yemen. Its temporal coverage spans from the late eighth century BCE to the seventh century CE during the rise of Islam and collapse of the Sasanian Empire. The authors argue that the persistence of large states and empires starting in the eighth/seventh centuries BCE, which continued for many centuries, led to new socio-political structures and institutions emerging in the Near East. The primary processes that enabled this emergence were large-scale and long-distance movements, or population migrations. These patterns of social developments are analysed under different aspects: settlement patterns, urban structure, material culture, trade, governance, language spread and religion, all pointing at movement as the main catalyst for social change. This book’s argument is framed within a larger theoretical framework termed as ‘universalism’, a theory that explains many of the social transformations that happened to societies in the Near East, starting from the Neo-Assyrian period and continuing for centuries. Among other influences, the effects of these transformations are today manifested in modern languages, concepts of government, universal religions and monetized and globalized economies.

Goddesses In Context

Author: Julia M. Asher-Greve
Publisher: Ruprecht Gmbh & Company
ISBN: 9783525543825
Size: 79.89 MB
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The authors examine from different perspectives some of the most challenging themes in Mesopotamian religion such as gender switch of deities and changes of the status, roles and functions of goddesses. Julia M. Asher-Greve and Goodnick Westenholz incorporate recent scholarship from various disciplines into their analysis of textual and visual sources, representations in diverse media, theological strategies, typologies, and the place of image in religion and cult over a span of three millennia. Different types of syncretism (fusion, fission, mutation) resulted in transformation and homogenization of goddesses' roles and functions. The processes of syncretism (a useful heuristic tool for studying the evolution of religions and the attendant political and social changes) and gender switch were facilitated by the fluidity of personality due to multiple or similar divine roles and functions. Few goddesses kept their identity throughout the millennia. Individuality is rare in the iconography of goddesses while visual emphasis is on repetition of generic divine figures (hieros typos) in order to retain recognizability of divinity, where femininity is of secondary significance. This richly illustrated book demonstrates that goddesses were never marginalized or extrinsic and that their continuous presence in texts, cult images, rituals, and worship throughout Mesopotamian history is testimony to their powerful numinous impact. This richly illustrated book is the first in-depth analysis of goddesses and the changes they underwent from the earliest visual and textual evidence around 3000 BCE to the end of ancient Mesopotamian civilization in the Seleucid period. Goddesses in Context is a compelling contribution to Mesopotamian religion and history as well as to history, art history, history of religion and gender studies.

The Collapse Of Complex Societies

Author: Joseph Tainter
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 9780521386739
Size: 21.67 MB
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Dr Tainter describes nearly two dozen cases of collapse and reviews more than 2000 years of explanations. He then develops a new and far-reaching theory.