the dancing goddesses folklore archaeology and the origins of european dance

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The Dancing Goddesses Folklore Archaeology And The Origins Of European Dance

Author : Elizabeth Wayland Barber
ISBN : 9780393089219
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 86. 86 MB
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A fascinating exploration of an ancient system of beliefs and its links to the evolution of dance. From southern Greece to northern Russia, people have long believed in female spirits, bringers of fertility, who spend their nights and days dancing in the fields and forests. So appealing were these spirit-maidens that they also took up residence in nineteenth-century Romantic literature. Archaeologist and linguist by profession, folk dancer by avocation, Elizabeth Wayland Barber has sleuthed through ethnographic lore and archaeological reports of east and southeast Europe, translating enchanting folktales about these “dancing goddesses” as well as eyewitness accounts of traditional rituals—texts that offer new perspectives on dance in agrarian society. She then traces these goddesses and their dances back through the Romans and Greeks to the first farmers of Europe. Along the way, she locates the origins of many customs, including coloring Easter eggs and throwing rice at the bride. The result is a detective story like no other and a joyful reminder of the human need to dance.

The Mummies Of R Mchi

Author : Elizabeth Wayland Barber
ISBN : 0393320197
Genre : History
File Size : 47. 54 MB
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A look at the incredibly well-preserved ancient mummies found in Western China describes their clothing and appearance, attempts to reconstruct their culture, and speculates about how Caucasians could have found their way to the feet of the Himalayan mountains. Reprint.

Women S Work

Author : E. J. W. Barber
ISBN : 0393313484
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 63. 72 MB
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Drawing on the latest archaeological and technological research, this intriguing study of women's history explores the relationship between the development of the fiber arts and women's roles in society.

When They Severed Earth From Sky

Author : Elizabeth Wayland Barber
ISBN : 9781400842865
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 45. 32 MB
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Why were Prometheus and Loki envisioned as chained to rocks? What was the Golden Calf? Why are mirrors believed to carry bad luck? How could anyone think that mortals like Perseus, Beowulf, and St. George actually fought dragons, since dragons don't exist? Strange though they sound, however, these "myths" did not begin as fiction. This absorbing book shows that myths originally transmitted real information about real events and observations, preserving the information sometimes for millennia within nonliterate societies. Geologists' interpretations of how a volcanic cataclysm long ago created Oregon's Crater Lake, for example, is echoed point for point in the local myth of its origin. The Klamath tribe saw it happen and passed down the story--for nearly 8,000 years. We, however, have been literate so long that we've forgotten how myths encode reality. Recent studies of how our brains work, applied to a wide range of data from the Pacific Northwest to ancient Egypt to modern stories reported in newspapers, have helped the Barbers deduce the characteristic principles by which such tales both develop and degrade through time. Myth is in fact a quite reasonable way to convey important messages orally over many generations--although reasoning back to the original events is possible only under rather specific conditions. Our oldest written records date to 5,200 years ago, but we have been speaking and mythmaking for perhaps 100,000. This groundbreaking book points the way to restoring some of that lost history and teaching us about human storytelling.

Prehistoric Textiles

Author : E. J. W. Barber
ISBN : 069100224X
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 64. 47 MB
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This pioneering work revises our notions of the origins and early development of textiles in Europe and the Near East. Using innovative linguistic techniques, along with methods from palaeobiology and other fields, it shows that spinning and pattern weaving began far earlier than has been supposed. Prehistoric Textiles made an unsurpassed leap in the social and cultural understanding of textiles in humankind's early history. Cloth making was an industry that consumed more time and effort, and was more culturally significant to prehistoric cultures, than anyone assumed before the book's publication. The textile industry is in fact older than pottery--and perhaps even older than agriculture and stockbreeding. It probably consumed far more hours of labor per year, in temperate climates, than did pottery and food production put together. And this work was done primarily by women. Up until the Industrial Revolution, and into this century in many peasant societies, women spent every available moment spinning, weaving, and sewing. The author, Elizabeth Wayland Barber, demonstrates command of an almost unbelievably disparate array of disciplines--from historical linguistics to archaeology and paleobiology, from art history to the practical art of weaving. Her passionate interest in the subject matter leaps out on every page. Barber, a professor of linguistics and archaeology, developed expert sewing and weaving skills as a small girl under her mother's tutelage. One could say she had been born and raised to write this book. Because modern textiles are almost entirely made by machines, we have difficulty appreciating how time-consuming and important the premodern textile industry was. This book opens our eyes to this crucial area of prehistoric human culture.

Ancestral Journeys The Peopling Of Europe From The First Venturers To The Vikings Revised Edition

Author : Jean Manco
ISBN : 9780500772904
Genre : History
File Size : 56. 84 MB
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“An ambitious and lucid full narrative account of the peopling of Europe . . . this will undoubtedly provide a base line for future debates on the origins of the Europeans.” —J. P. Mallory, author of In Search of the Indo-Europeans and The Origins of the Irish Who are the Europeans? Where did they come from? New research in the fields of archaeology and linguistics, a revolution in the study of genetics, and cutting-edge analysis of ancient DNA are dramatically changing our picture of prehistory, leading us to question what we thought we knew about these ancient peoples. This paradigm-shifting book paints a spirited portrait of a restless people that challenges our established ways of looking at Europe’s past. The story is more complex than at first believed, with new evidence suggesting that the European gene pool was stirred vigorously multiple times. Genetic clues are also enhancing our understanding of European mobility in epochs with written records, including the arrival of the Anglo-Saxons, the spread of the Slavs, and the adventures of the Vikings. Now brought completely up to date with all the latest findings from the fast-moving fields of genetics, DNA, and dating, Jean Manco’s highly readable account weaves multiple strands of evidence into a startling new history of the continent, of interest to anyone who wants to truly understand Europeans’ place in the ancient world.

The Amazons

Author : Adrienne Mayor
ISBN : 9781400865130
Genre : History
File Size : 20. 28 MB
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Amazons—fierce warrior women dwelling on the fringes of the known world—were the mythic archenemies of the ancient Greeks. Heracles and Achilles displayed their valor in duels with Amazon queens, and the Athenians reveled in their victory over a powerful Amazon army. In historical times, Cyrus of Persia, Alexander the Great, and the Roman general Pompey tangled with Amazons. But just who were these bold barbarian archers on horseback who gloried in fighting, hunting, and sexual freedom? Were Amazons real? In this deeply researched, wide-ranging, and lavishly illustrated book, National Book Award finalist Adrienne Mayor presents the Amazons as they have never been seen before. This is the first comprehensive account of warrior women in myth and history across the ancient world, from the Mediterranean Sea to the Great Wall of China. Mayor tells how amazing new archaeological discoveries of battle-scarred female skeletons buried with their weapons prove that women warriors were not merely figments of the Greek imagination. Combining classical myth and art, nomad traditions, and scientific archaeology, she reveals intimate, surprising details and original insights about the lives and legends of the women known as Amazons. Provocatively arguing that a timeless search for a balance between the sexes explains the allure of the Amazons, Mayor reminds us that there were as many Amazon love stories as there were war stories. The Greeks were not the only people enchanted by Amazons—Mayor shows that warlike women of nomadic cultures inspired exciting tales in ancient Egypt, Persia, India, Central Asia, and China. Driven by a detective's curiosity, Mayor unearths long-buried evidence and sifts fact from fiction to show how flesh-and-blood women of the Eurasian steppes were mythologized as Amazons, the equals of men. The result is likely to become a classic.

Tatterdemalion

Author : Sylvia V Linsteadt
ISBN : 9781783523306
Genre : Fiction
File Size : 61. 11 MB
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In a ruined world, what survives are the tales we tell. Tatterdemalion is a uniquely original post-apocalyptic novel rooted in fantasy and folklore. It begins when Poppy, who speaks the languages of wild things, travels east to the mountains with the wheeled and elephantine beast, Lyoobov. He’s seeking answers to the mysteries of his birth, and the origins of a fallen world. Up in the glacial peaks, among a strange, mountainous people, a Juniper Tree takes Poppy deep into her roots and shows him the true stories of the people who made his world, people he thought were only myths. Their tales span centuries, from three hundred years in the future all the way back to our present day. It is through this feral but redemptive folklore that Poppy begins to understand the story of his own past and his place in the present. Tatterdemalion is a brilliant collaboration between the visual artist Rima Staines and the author Sylvia Linsteadt, and it features 14 original colour illustrations which inspired the story.

Afterlives

Author : Nancy Mandeville Caciola
ISBN : 9781501703461
Genre : History
File Size : 49. 49 MB
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Simultaneously real and unreal, the dead are people, yet they are not. The society of medieval Europe developed a rich set of imaginative traditions about death and the afterlife, using the dead as a point of entry for thinking about the self, regeneration, and loss. These macabre preoccupations are evident in the widespread popularity of stories about the returned dead, who interacted with the living both as disembodied spirits and as living corpses or revenants. In Afterlives, Nancy Mandeville Caciola explores this extraordinary phenomenon of the living's relationship with the dead in Europe during the five hundred years after the year 1000. Caciola considers both Christian and pagan beliefs, showing how certain traditions survived and evolved over time, and how attitudes both diverged and overlapped through different contexts and social strata. As she shows, the intersection of Christian eschatology with various pagan afterlife imaginings—from the classical paganisms of the Mediterranean to the Germanic, Celtic, Slavic, and Scandinavian paganisms indigenous to northern Europe—brought new cultural values about the dead into the Christian fold as Christianity spread across Europe. Indeed, the Church proved surprisingly open to these influences, absorbing new images of death and afterlife in unpredictable fashion. Over time, however, the persistence of regional cultures and beliefs would be counterbalanced by the effects of an increasingly centralized Church hierarchy. Through it all, one thing remained constant: the deep desire in medieval people to bring together the living and the dead into a single community enduring across the generations.

Dancing Fear And Desire

Author : Stavros Stavrou Karayanni
ISBN : 9781554587193
Genre : Performing Arts
File Size : 44. 26 MB
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Throughout centuries of European colonial domination, the bodies of Middle Eastern dancers, male and female, move sumptuously and seductively across the pages of Western travel journals, evoking desire and derision, admiration and disdain, allure and revulsion. This profound ambivalence forms the axis of an investigation into Middle Eastern dance—an investigation that extends to contemporary belly dance. Stavros Stavrou Karayanni, through historical investigation, theoretical analysis, and personal reflection, explores how Middle Eastern dance actively engages race, sex, and national identity. Close readings of colonial travel narratives, an examination of Oscar Wilde’s Salome, and analyses of treatises about Greek dance, reveal the intricate ways in which this controversial dance has been shaped by Eurocentric models that define and control identity performance.

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