Death Rituals, Social Order and the Archaeology of Immortality in the Ancient World: 'Death Shall Have No Dominion'

Death Rituals, Social Order and the Archaeology of Immortality in the Ancient World: 'Death Shall Have No Dominion'

Hardback

Edited by Lord Colin Renfrew, Edited by Michael Boyd, Edited by Iain Morley

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  • Publisher: CAMBRIDGE UNIVERSITY PRESS
  • Format: Hardback | 460 pages
  • Dimensions: 216mm x 279mm x 43mm | 1,672g
  • Publication date: 31 October 2015
  • Publication City/Country: Cambridge
  • ISBN 10: 1107082730
  • ISBN 13: 9781107082731
  • Illustrations note: 163 b/w illus. 13 maps 7 tables

Product description

Modern archaeology has amassed considerable evidence for the disposal of the dead through burials, cemeteries and other monuments. Drawing on this body of evidence, this book offers fresh insight into how early human societies conceived of death and the afterlife. The twenty-seven essays in this volume consider the rituals and responses to death in prehistoric societies across the world, from eastern Asia through Europe to the Americas, and from the very earliest times before developed religious beliefs offered scriptural answers to these questions. Compiled and written by leading prehistorians and archaeologists, this volume traces the emergence of death as a concept in early times, as well as a contributing factor to the formation of communities and social hierarchies, and sometimes the creation of divinities.

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Author information

Colin Renfrew (Lord Renfrew of Kaimsthorn) was formerly Disney Professor of Archaeology and Director of the McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research at the University of Cambridge. He is author of many influential books on archaeology and prehistory, including, most recently, with Paul G. Bahn, The Cambridge World Prehistory (Cambridge University Press, 2014). Michael J. Boyd is a Senior Research Associate at the McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research at the University of Cambridge. He is assistant director of the Keros Island Survey and coeditor of the Keros publications series. He is coeditor of a volume on funerary archaeology, Staging Death. Iain Morley is Lecturer in Palaeoanthropology and Human Sciences at the University of Oxford and a Fellow of St Hugh's College. He has published numerous articles and books, including Becoming Human: Innovation in Prehistoric Material and Spiritual Culture and Image and Imagination: A Global Prehistory of Figurative Representation (both coedited with Colin Renfrew), as well as The Prehistory of Music.

Table of contents

Preface Colin Renfrew, Michael J. Boyd and Iain Morley; 1. 'The unanswered question': investigating early conceptualisations of death Colin Renfrew; Part I. Intimations of Mortality: 2. Non-human animal responses towards the dead and death: a comparative approach to understanding the evolution of human mortuary practices Alex Piel and Fiona Stewart; 3. Lower and Middle Palaeolithic mortuary behaviours and the origins of ritual burial Joao Zilhao; 4. Upper Palaeolithic mortuary practices: reflection of ethnic affiliation, social complexity and cultural turn-over Francesco d'Errico and Marian Vanhaeren; Part II. Mortality and the Foundations of Human Society: Sedentism and the Collective: 5. Gathering of the dead? The Early Neolithic sanctuaries of Gobekli Tepe, Southeastern Turkey Jens Notroff, Oliver Dietrich and Klaus Schmidt; 6. Death and architecture: the Pre-Pottery Neolithic A burials at WF16, Wadi Faynan, Southern Jordan Steven Mithen, Bill Finlayson, Darko Maricevic, Sam Smith, Emma Jenkins and Mohammad Najjar; 7. Corporealities of death in the central Andes (c.9000-2000 BC) Peter Kaulicke; 8. Mediating the dominion of death in Prehistoric Malta Simon Stoddart; 9. House societies and founding ancestors in Early Neolithic Britain Julian Thomas; Part III. Constructing the Ancestors: 10. Constructing ancestors in Sub-Saharan Africa Timothy Insoll; 11. Different kinds of dead: presencing Andean expired beings George F. Lau; 12. Putting death in its place: the idea of the cemetery Anthony Snodgrass; 13. Becoming Mycenaean? The living, the dead and the ancestors in the transformation of society in second millennium BC southern Greece Michael J. Boyd; Part IV. Death, Hierarchy and the Social Order: 14. Life and death in late-prehistoric to early historic Mesopotamia Karina Croucher; 15. The big sleep: early Maya mortuary ritual Norman Hammond; 16. De-paradoxisation of paradoxes by referring to death as an ultimate paradox: the case of the state-formation phase of Japan Koji Mizoguchi; 17. Death and mortuary rituals in mainland southeast Asia: from hunter-gatherers to the god kings of Angkor Charles F. W. Higham; Part V. Materiality and Memory: 18. How did the Mycenaeans remember? Death, matter and memory in the early Mycenaean world Lambros Malafouris; 19. Eternal glory: the origins of eastern jade burial and its far-reaching influence Li Shuicheng; 20. Eventful deaths - eventful lives? Bronze age mortuary practices in the late prehistoric Eurasian steppes of central Russia (2100-1500 BC) Bryan Hanks, Roger Doonan, Derek Pitman, Elena Kupriyanova and Dmitri Zdanovich; Part VI. Intimations of Immortality: Glimpsing Other Worlds: 21. Northern Iroquoian deathways and the re-imagination of community John L. Creese; 22. Locating a sense of immortality in early Egyptian cemeteries Alice Stevenson; 23. Buddhist mortuary traditions in ancient India: stupas, relics and the Buddhist landscape Julia Shaw; 24. Killing mummies: on Inka epistemology and imperial power Terence N. D'Altroy; Part VII. Responses and Reactions: Concluding Thoughts: 25. Death shall have no dominion: a response Timothy Jenkins; 26. Comments: death shall have no dominion Paul Wason; 27. The muse of archaeology Ben Okri.