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    The Graven Image: Representation in Babylonia and Assyria (Archaeology, Culture, and Society) (Hardback) By (author) Zainab Bahrani

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    DescriptionMesopotamia, the world's earliest literate culture, developed a rich philosophical conception of representation in which the world was saturated with signs. Instead of imitating the natural world, representation-both in writing and in visual images-was thought to participate in the world and to have an effect upon it in natural, magical, and supernatural ways. The Graven Image is the first book to explore this tradition, which developed prior to, and apart from, the Greek understanding of representation. The classical Greek system, based on the notion of mimesis, or copy, is the one with which we are most familiar today. The Assyro-Babylonian ontology presented here by Zainab Bahrani opens up fresh avenues for thinking about the concept of representation in general, and her reading of the ancient Mesopotamian textual and visual record in its own ontological context develops an entirely new approach to understanding Babylonian and Assyrian arts in particular. The Graven Image describes, for the first time, rituals and wars involving images; the relationship of divination, the organic body, and representation; and the use of images as a substitute for the human form, integrating this ancient material into contemporary debates in critical theory. Bahrani challenges current methodologies in the study of Near Eastern archaeology and art history, introducing a new way to appreciate the unique contributions of Assyrian and Babylonian culture and their complex relationships to the past and present.

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  • Full bibliographic data for The Graven Image

    The Graven Image
    Representation in Babylonia and Assyria
    Authors and contributors
    By (author) Zainab Bahrani
    Physical properties
    Format: Hardback
    Number of pages: 256
    Width: 162 mm
    Height: 237 mm
    Thickness: 22 mm
    Weight: 567 g
    ISBN 13: 9780812236484
    ISBN 10: 0812236483

    B&T Book Type: NF
    Nielsen BookScan Product Class 3: S3.0
    BIC E4L: SOC
    B&T Modifier: Region of Publication: 01
    B&T Modifier: Subject Development: 01
    B&T General Subject: 750
    Ingram Subject Code: AH
    BIC subject category V2: JH
    BISAC V2.8: SOC003000
    Ingram Theme: CHRN/ANCIEN
    BIC subject category V2: HD
    BISAC Merchandising Theme: ET135
    Ingram Theme: CULT/MIDEST
    B&T Modifier: Academic Level: 02
    B&T Merchandise Category: UP
    Warengruppen-Systematik des deutschen Buchhandels: 15530
    BISAC V2.8: ART015060
    LC subject heading: ,
    DC22: 302.2/0935
    LC classification: BH102 .B34 2003
    LC subject heading: ,
    DC22: 302.20935
    LC subject heading: , ,
    DC21: 302.20935
    Thema V1.0: NK, JH
    Edition statement
    New ed.
    Illustrations note
    University of Pennsylvania Press
    Imprint name
    University of Pennsylvania Press
    Publication date
    23 June 2003
    Publication City/Country
    Author Information
    Zainab Bahrani is Edith Porada Professor of Art and Archaeology at Columbia University.
    Review quote
    "A passionate and powerful polemic."-Antiquity "Bahrani opens up the field of discourse for the study of ancient Near Eastern art and brings it into dialogue with current disciplinary trends... The book will stimulate further discussion about the nature(s) of Babylonian and Assyrian representation across the disciplinary divides."-Journal of the American Oriental Society "A welcome addition to the study of the ancient Near East. It breaks away from Eurocentric approaches and tries to do justice to Mesopotamian thought, thus shedding new light on the relationship between text and representation... Bahrani's book will become the center of a lively debate."-Bryn Mawr Classical Review
    Table of contents
    List of Illustrations Introduction 1. The Aesthetic and the Epistemic: Race, Culture, and Antiquity 2. The Extraterrestrial Orient: Despotic Time and the Time of the Despots 3. Ethnography and Mimesis: Representing Aesthetic Culture 4. Being in the Word: Of Grammatology and Mantic 5. Salmu: Representation in the Real 6. Decoys and Lures: Substitution and the Uncanny Double of the King 7. Presence and Repetition: The Altar of Tukulti-Ninurta 8. Conclusion: Image, Text, and Differance, or from Difference to Differance Notes Bibliography Index Acknowledgments