Bringing anthropology in to the realm of religion, Douglas enters into the ongoing debate in religious circles surrounding meaning and ritual. The book not only provides a clear explanation to four distinct attitudes to religion, but also defends hierarchical forms of religious organization and attempts to retain a balanced judgement between fundamentalism and established religion. Douglas has since extensively refined the grid/group theory and has applied it to consumer behaviour, labour movements and political parties.
Douglas and Ney state that Economic Man, from its semitechnical niche in eighteenth-century economic theory, has taken over the realms of psychology, consumption, public assistance, political science, and philosophy. They say that by distorting the statistical data presented for policy analysis, the ideas of the solipsist self and objectivity indeed often protect a political bias. The authors propose to correct this by revising the current model of the person. Taking cultural bias into account and giving full play to political dissent, they restore the "persons" who have been missing from the social science debates.
Drawing from anthropology, economics, political science, and sociology, the authors set forth a fundamental critique of the social sciences. Their book will find a wide audience among social scientists and will also interest anyone engaged in current discussions of poverty.
This book is a copublication with the Russell Sage Foundation.
Contributors include: Mary Douglas, Norman Cohn, Peter Brown, Keith Thomas, Alan Macfarlane, Alison Redmayne, R.G. Willis, Edwin Ardener, Robert Brain, Julian Pitt-Rivers, Esther Goody, Peter Rivière, Anthony Forge, Godfrey Lienhardt, I.M. Lewis, Brian Spooner, G.I. Jones, Malcolm Ruel and T.O. Beidelman.
First published in 1970.
Prompted by public outcries and by the confusion and uncertainty surrounding risk management policy, social scientists have begun to address themselves to the issue of risk perception. But as anthropologist Mary Douglas points out, they have been singularly reluctant to examine the cultural bases of risk perception, preferring to concentrate on the individual perceiver making individual choices. This approach leaves unexamined a number of crucial social factors—our concepts of what is “natural” or “artificial,” for example; our beliefs about fairness, and our moral judgements about the kind of society in which we want to live.
This provocative and path-breaking report seeks to open a sociological approach to risk perception that has so far been systematically neglected. Describing first some exceptions to the general neglect of culture, Douglas builds on these clues and on her own broad anthropological perspective to make a compelling case for focusing on social factors in risk perception. She offers a challenge and a promising new agenda to all who study perceptions of risk and, by extension, to those who study human cognition and choice as well.
"An altogether brilliant piece of writing—far-reaching and a joy to read." —Amartya Sen, Oxford University
A Volume in the Russell Sage Foundation's Social Science Frontiers Series
This volume is part of a 2001 reissue of a selection of those important works which have since gone out of print, or are difficult to locate. Published by Routledge, 112 volumes in total are being brought together under the name The International Behavioural and Social Sciences Library: Classics from the Tavistock Press.
Reproduced here in facsimile, this volume was originally published in 1969 and is available individually. The collection is also available in a number of themed mini-sets of between 5 and 13 volumes, or as a complete collection.
Natural Symbols is a book about religion and it concerns our own society at least as much as any other. It has stimulated new insights into religious and political movements and has provoked re-appraisals of current progressive orthodoxies in many fields. As a classic, it represents a work of anthropology in its widest sense, exploring themes such as the social meaning of natural symbols and the image of the body in society which are now very much in vogue in anthropology, sociology and cultural studies.
In this reissue and with a new Introduction, Natural Symbols will continue to appeal to all students of anthropology, sociology and religion.
Environmental damage, climate change, globalization, rapid population growth, and unwise political choices were all factors in the demise of societies around the world, but some found solutions and persisted. As in Guns, Germs, and Steel, Diamond traces the fundamental pattern of catastrophe, and weaves an all-encompassing global thesis through a series of fascinating historical-cultural narratives. Collapse moves from the Polynesian cultures on Easter Island to the flourishing American civilizations of the Anasazi and the Maya and finally to the doomed Viking colony on Greenland. Similar problems face us today and have already brought disaster to Rwanda and Haiti, even as China and Australia are trying to cope in innovative ways. Despite our own society’s apparently inexhaustible wealth and unrivaled political power, ominous warning signs have begun to emerge even in ecologically robust areas like Montana.
Brilliant, illuminating, and immensely absorbing, Collapse is destined to take its place as one of the essential books of our time, raising the urgent question: How can our world best avoid committing ecological suicide?
From the Trade Paperback edition.
Near the end of the last Ice Age 12,800 years ago, a giant comet that had entered the solar system from deep space thousands of years earlier, broke into multiple fragments. Some of these struck the Earth causing a global cataclysm on a scale unseen since the extinction of the dinosaurs. At least eight of the fragments hit the North American ice cap, while further fragments hit the northern European ice cap. The impacts, from comet fragments a mile wide approaching at more than 60,000 miles an hour, generated huge amounts of heat which instantly liquidized millions of square kilometers of ice, destabilizing the Earth's crust and causing the global Deluge that is remembered in myths all around the world. A second series of impacts, equally devastating, causing further cataclysmic flooding, occurred 11,600 years ago, the exact date that Plato gives for the destruction and submergence of Atlantis.
The evidence revealed in this book shows beyond reasonable doubt that an advanced civilization that flourished during the Ice Age was destroyed in the global cataclysms between 12,800 and 11,600 years ago. But there were survivors - known to later cultures by names such as 'the Sages', 'the Magicians', 'the Shining Ones', and 'the Mystery Teachers of Heaven'. They travelled the world in their great ships doing all in their power to keep the spark of civilization burning. They settled at key locations - Gobekli Tepe in Turkey, Baalbek in the Lebanon, Giza in Egypt, ancient Sumer, Mexico, Peru and across the Pacific where a huge pyramid has recently been discovered in Indonesia. Everywhere they went these 'Magicians of the Gods' brought with them the memory of a time when mankind had fallen out of harmony with the universe and paid a heavy price. A memory and a warning to the future...
For the comet that wrought such destruction between 12,800 and 11,600 years may not be done with us yet. Astronomers believe that a 20-mile wide 'dark' fragment of the original giant comet remains hidden within its debris stream and threatens the Earth. An astronomical message encoded at Gobekli Tepe, and in the Sphinx and the pyramids of Egypt,warns that the 'Great Return' will occur in our time...
Is history destined to repeat itself?Will biblical prophecies come true, and if so, when?
It has been more than three decades since Zecharia Sitchin's trailblazing book The 12th Planet brought to life the Sumerian civilization and its record of the Anunnaki—the extraterrestrials who fashioned man and gave mankind civilization and religion. In this new volume, Sitchin shows that the End is anchored in the events of the Beginning, and once you learn of this Beginning, it is possible to foretell the Future.
In The End of Days, a masterwork that required thirty years of additional research, Sitchin presents compelling new evidence that the Past is the Future—that mankind and its planet Earth are subject to a predetermined cyclical Celestial Time.
In an age when religious fanaticism and a clash of civilizations raise the specter of a nuclear Armageddon, Zecharia Sitchin shatters perceptions and uses history to reveal what is to come at The End of Days.
From Harald Bluetooth to Cnut the Great, the feared seamen and plunderers of the Viking Age ruled Norway, Sweden, and Denmark but roamed as far as Byzantium, Greenland, and America. Raiders and traders, settlers and craftsmen, the medieval Scandinavians who have become familiar to history as Vikings never lose their capacity to fascinate, from their ingeniously designed longboats to their stormy pantheon of Viking gods and goddesses, ruled by Odin in Valhalla. Robert Ferguson is a sure guide across what he calls "the treacherous marches which divide legend from fact in Viking Age history." His long familiarity with the literary culture of Scandinavia with its skaldic poetry is combined with the latest archaeological discoveries to reveal a sweeping picture of the Norsemen, one of history's most amazing civilizations.
Impeccably researched and filled with compelling accounts and analyses of legendary Viking warriors and Norse mythology, The Vikings is an indispensable guide to medieval Scandinavia and is a wonderful companion to the History Channel series.
Volumes in the Library of Ancient Israel draw on multiple disciplines--such as archaeology, anthropology, sociology, linguistics, and literary criticism--to illuminate the everyday realities and social subtleties these ancient cultures experienced. This series employs sophisticated methods resulting in original contributions that depict the reality of the people behind the Hebrew Bible and interprets these insights for a wide variety of readers.
While Graham Hancock is no stranger to stirring up heated controversy among scientific experts, his books and television documentaries have intrigued millions of people around the world and influenced many to rethink their views about the origins of human civilization. Now he returns with an explosive new work of archaeological detection. In Underworld, Hancock continues his remarkable quest underwater, where, according to almost a thousand ancient myths from every part of the globe, the ruins of a lost civilization, obliterated in a universal flood, are to be found.
Guided by cutting-edge science and the latest archaeological scholarship, Hancock begins his mission to discover the truth about these myths and examines the mystery at the end of the last Ice Age. As the glaciers melted between 17,000 and 7,000 years ago, sea levels rose and more than 15 million square miles of habitable land were submerged underwater, resulting in a radical change to the Earth’s shape and the conditions in which people could live. Using the latest computer techniques to map the world’s changing coastlines, Hancock finds astonishing correspondences with the ancient flood myths.
Filled with thrilling accounts of his own participation in dives off the coast of Japan, as well as in the Mediterranean, the Atlantic, and the Arabian Sea, we watch as Hancock discovers underwater ruins exactly where the myths say they should be—sunken kingdoms that archaeologists never thought existed. Fans of Hancock’s previous adventures will find themselves immersed in Underworld, a provocative book that provides both compelling hard evidence for a fascinating, forgotten episode in human history and a completely new explanation for the origins of civilization as we know it.
From the Hardcover edition.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
As well as superb translations of all non-biblical texts sufficiently well preserved to be rendered into English, there are also a number of previously unpublished texts, and a new preface.
Since its first publication in 1962, The Dead Sea Scrolls in English has established itself as the standard English translation of the non-Biblical Qumran Scrolls and as giving an astonishing insight to the organization, customs, history and beliefs of the community responsible for them. This seventh edition will contain new material, together with extensive new introductory material and notes.
Displaying the unparalleled descriptive power, unerring eye for fascinating detail, keen insight, and trenchant wit that have made the novels she writes (as Elizabeth Peters and Barbara Michaels) perennial New York Times bestsellers, internationally renowned Egyptologist Barbara Mertz brings a long-buried civilization to vivid life. In Red Land, Black Land, she transports us back thousands of years and immerses us in the sights, aromas, and sounds of day-to-day living in the legendary desert realm that was ancient Egypt.
Who were these people whose civilization has inspired myriad films, books, artwork, myths, and dreams, and who built astonishing monuments that still stagger the imagination five thousand years later? What did average Egyptians eat, drink, wear, gossip about, and aspire to? What were their amusements, their beliefs, their attitudes concerning religion, childrearing, nudity, premarital sex? Mertz ushers us into their homes, workplaces, temples, and palaces to give us an intimate view of the everyday worlds of the royal and commoner alike. We observe priests and painters, scribes and pyramid builders, slaves, housewives, and queens—and receive fascinating tips on how to perform tasks essential to ancient Egyptian living, from mummification to making papyrus.
An eye-opening and endlessly entertaining companion volume to Temples, Tombs, and Hieroglyphs, Mertz's extraordinary history of ancient Egypt, Red Land, Black Land offers readers a brilliant display of rich description and fascinating edification. It brings us closer than ever before to the people of a great lost culture that was so different from—yet so surprisingly similar to—our own.
Twenty thousand years ago, women were making and wearing the first clothing created from spun fibers. In fact, right up to the Industrial Revolution the fiber arts were an enormous economic force, belonging primarily to women.
Despite the great toil required in making cloth and clothing, most books on ancient history and economics have no information on them. Much of this gap results from the extreme perishability of what women produced, but it seems clear that until now descriptions of prehistoric and early historic cultures have omitted virtually half the picture.
Elizabeth Wayland Barber has drawn from data gathered by the most sophisticated new archaeological methods—methods she herself helped to fashion. In a "brilliantly original book" (Katha Pollitt, Washington Post Book World), she argues that women were a powerful economic force in the ancient world, with their own industry: fabric.
An epic adventure that began with one simple question: Why does my foot hurt?
Isolated by Mexico's deadly Copper Canyons, the blissful Tarahumara Indians have honed the ability to run hundreds of miles without rest or injury. In a riveting narrative, award-winning journalist and often-injured runner Christopher McDougall sets out to discover their secrets. In the process, he takes his readers from science labs at Harvard to the sun-baked valleys and freezing peaks across North America, where ever-growing numbers of ultra-runners are pushing their bodies to the limit, and, finally, to a climactic race in the Copper Canyons that pits America’s best ultra-runners against the tribe. McDougall’s incredible story will not only engage your mind but inspire your body when you realize that you, indeed all of us, were born to run.
Why are the Elgin Marbles in London and not on the Acropolis? Why do there seem to be as many mummies in France as there are in Egypt? Why are so many Etruscan masterworks in America? For the past two centuries, the West has been plundering the treasures of the ancient world to fill its great museums, but in recent years, the countries where ancient civilizations originated have begun to push back, taking museums to court, prosecuting curators, and threatening to force the return of these priceless objects.
Where do these treasures rightly belong? Sharon Waxman, a former culture reporter for The New York Times and a longtime foreign correspondent, brings us inside this high-stakes conflict, examining the implications for the preservation of the objects themselves and for how we understand our shared cultural heritage. Her journey takes readers from the great cities of Europe and America to Egypt, Turkey, Greece, and Italy, as these countries face down the Louvre, the Metropolitan Museum, the British Museum, and the J. Paul Getty Museum. She also introduces a cast of determined and implacable characters whose battles may strip these museums of some of their most cherished treasures.
For readers who are fascinated by antiquity, who love to frequent museums, and who believe in the value of cultural exchange, Loot opens a new window on an enduring conflict.
For centuries, philosophers, scientists, and charlatans have attempted to decipher the baffling mysteries of our past, from the Stonehenge to the lost continent of Atlantis. Today, however, DNA testing, radiocarbon dating, and other cutting-edge investigative tools, together with a healthy dose of common sense, are guiding us closer to the truth.
Peter James and Nick Thorpe, the professional historian and archaeologist team who created the acclaimed Ancient Inventions, now tackle these age-old conundrums, presenting the latest information from the scientific community--and the most startling challenges to traditional explanations of mysteries such as:
- The rise and fall of the Maya
- A lost cache of Dead Sea Scrolls
- The curse of Tutankhamun
- The devastation of Sodom and Gomorrah
- The Nazca Lines
These true mystery stories twist and turn like a good whodunit, as James and Thorpe present the evidence for and against the expert theories, shedding new light on humankind's age-old struggle to make sense of the past. The authors also make dramatic contributions of their own to the fray, demonstrating persuasively that cataustrophic events--including the collisions of comets with the Earth long ago--could explain puzzles that have baffled experts for centuries. Ancient Mysteries will entertain and enlighten, delight the curious and inform the serious.
From the Hardcover edition.
Linking prehistoric archaeological remains with the development of language, David Anthony identifies the prehistoric peoples of central Eurasia's steppe grasslands as the original speakers of Proto-Indo-European, and shows how their innovative use of the ox wagon, horseback riding, and the warrior's chariot turned the Eurasian steppes into a thriving transcontinental corridor of communication, commerce, and cultural exchange. He explains how they spread their traditions and gave rise to important advances in copper mining, warfare, and patron-client political institutions, thereby ushering in an era of vibrant social change. Anthony also describes his fascinating discovery of how the wear from bits on ancient horse teeth reveals the origins of horseback riding.
The Horse, the Wheel, and Language solves a puzzle that has vexed scholars for two centuries--the source of the Indo-European languages and English--and recovers a magnificent and influential civilization from the past.
Illustrated with drawings, maps, and photographs
The Great Pyramid. Stonehenge. Machu Picchu. For centuries, these and other sacred sites have inspired wonder among those who ponder their origins.
Conventional science tells us they were constructed by local peoples working with the primitive tools of a fledgling civilization. But these megaliths nonetheless continue to attract pilgrims, scholars, and adventurers drawn by the possibility that their true spiritual and technological secrets remain hidden.
Who could have built these elaborate monuments? How did they do it? And what were their incomprehensible efforts and sacrifices designed to accomplish?
Now comes a revolutionary theory that connects these mysteries to reveal a hidden global pattern -- the ancient work of an advanced civilization whose warnings of planetary cataclysm now reverberate across one hundred millennia.
International bestselling author Colin Wilson and Canadian researcher Rand Flem-Ath join forces to share startling evidence of a fiercely intelligent society dating back as much as 100,000 years -- one that sailed the oceans of the world, building monuments to preserve and communicate its remarkable wisdom.
The Atlantis Blueprint is their term for a sophisticated network of connections between these sacred sites that they trace to Atlantis: a sophisticated maritime society that charted the globe from its home base in Antarctica ... until it was obliterated by the devastating global changes it anticipated but could not escape.
Here is adventure to realms beyond our imaginings ... to shifting poles, changing latitudes ... into the world of ancient mariners who recharted the globe ... to astonishing discoveries about our ancestors. Here are the great mysteries ... the incredibly complex geography of the Temple of Luxor ... the startling sophistication of Egyptian science and math ... and tantalizing similarities among the Hebrew, Greek, and Mayan alphabets to the Chinese lunar zodiac.
The Atlantis Blueprint opens up a Pandora's box of ancient mysteries, lost worlds, and millennial riddles. It is a story as controversial, fascinating, dangerous -- and inspiring -- as any ever told.
From the Hardcover edition.
Since the Victorian period, it has been understood that the story of Noah, iconic in the Book of Genesis, and a central motif in Judaism, Christianity and Islam, derives from a much older story that existed centuries before in ancient Babylon. But the relationship between the Babylonian and biblical traditions was shrouded in mystery. Then, in 2009, Irving Finkel, a curator at the British Museum and a world authority on ancient Mesopotamia, found himself playing detective when a member of the public arrived at the museum with an intriguing cuneiform tablet from a family collection. Not only did the tablet reveal a new version of the Babylonian Flood Story; the ancient poet described the size and completely unexpected shape of the ark, and gave detailed boat building specifications. Decoding this ancient message wedge by cuneiform wedge, Dr. Finkel discovered where the Babylonians believed the ark came to rest and developed a new explanation of how the old story ultimately found its way into the Bible. In The Ark Before Noah, Dr. Finkel takes us on an adventurous voyage of discovery, opening the door to an enthralling world of ancient voices and new meanings.
The fascination Ancient Egypt holds in our minds has many sources, but at the heart of it lie hieroglyphics. This extraordinary writing system was for many years seen as the ultimate challenge and puzzle before finally being cracked in the 1820s. Preserved carved in stone or inked on papyri, hieroglyphic writings give a unique insight into an awe-inspiring but also deeply mysterious culture.
Toby Wilkinson has translated a rich selection of pieces, ranging from accounts of battles to hymns to stories to royal proclamations. This book is both very enjoyable and an essential resource for anyone wanting to study one of humankind's great civilizations.
Logging tens of thousands of miles and visiting private collectors from all walks of life since 1982, Robert Boszhardt has documented thousands of projectile points found in this region. In addition to drawings of each style, he provides other accepted names as well as names of related points, age, distribution, a description (including length and width), material, and references for each type. The guide is meant for the many avocational archaeologists who collect projectile points in the Upper Midwest and will be a useful reference tool for professional field archaeologists as well.
Emphasizing the preservation of sites as well as a mutual exchange of information between professional and avocational archaeologists, this guide will reveal projectile points as clues to the past, time markers which embody crucial information about the cultures of the Mississippi River Valley's early inhabitants.