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Hathor Rising: The Power of the Goddess in Ancient Egypt Paperback – June 1, 1997

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Hathor Rising covers such Egyptian leaders as Queen Nefertiti and the female Pharaoh Hatshepsut intelligently and in detail, shedding new light on old facts." (Magical Blend)

About the Author

Alison Roberts, Ph.D., studied ancient Egyptian and Akkadian at the University of Oxford. She completed her doctoral thesis "Cult Objects of Hathor" in 1984, and has since written and lectured on ancient Egypt. She lives in England.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Inner Traditions; 1st [U.S.] ed edition (June 1, 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 089281621X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0892816217
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 0.5 x 10 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #773,425 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

23 of 23 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 17, 1998
Format: Paperback
British Egyptologist Alison Roberts has blended history, religion, myth, and art in this first of projected two volumes. Focusing on Upper Egypt (especially Thebes) and the New Kingdom era, she follows the evolving role of the solar serpent goddess known as Hathor through the reigns of such famous pharaohs as Hatshepsut, Akhenaten, and Tutankhamun. Sprinkling her narrative with poems, hymns, myths, and folktales, Roberts avoids the common mistakes of books for the general reader. She does not treat the religion of Ancient Egypt as monolithic and static, nor does she allow Western biases toward monotheism to turn Akhenaten into a hero. She shows how Egyptian religion was already changing after the rise of Thebes and how a new emphasis on inward personal religious experience was manifested during the reign of Hatshepsut (150 years before Akhenaten). She points out the ironic fact that Akhenaten, personally close to the female members of his family (mother, wife, and daughters), made religious changes which actually decreased the role of female deity. The book is lavishly illustrated with black and white photograps and drawings, all clearly explained and tighly woven into the narrative. I look forward to the projected second volume, in which she intends to focus on Upper Egypt (especially Memphis) and the resurgence of female deity in the post-Akhenaten era.
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24 of 26 people found the following review helpful By john e. crane on December 28, 1999
Format: Paperback
Dr. Roberts has a deep understanding of the core structures of Egyptian religion, and in particular the Goddess dynamic and its fundamental importance in that system. I noticed an earlier reviewer that stated that Massey, Kuhn and Schwaller de Lubicz understood Egyptian Religion, and that this author did not. Nothing could be further from the truth. Those three men saw Egyptian religion in terms of the continuation of some vast and ancient tradition from the Golden or Hyperborean Age, rather than looking at Egypt on its own terms. I have even seen one author who went so far as to state that the Egyptians only passed along knowledge that they did not understand! Another author said that the Greeks and Romans, being closer in time to Ancient Egypt than we are, possessed a more valid understanding than we can ever have at the present. Again, such attitudes denigrate the realization and understanding within that civilization and allow for overlays that do not have any basis from an archaeological viewpoint, to say nothing of a religious or spiritual viewpoint.
One has to look at the dynamics of Egyptian religion in terms of its own expression and interpretation of reality, rather than imposing one's own interpretation. In a list of of twenty-five books essential for building an introductory knowledge base of Egyptian religion, I would rate this about #12. The books by R.A. and Isha de Lubicz would be somewhere around #30 and off the bottom of the list.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Francesca Jourdan on August 11, 2000
Format: Paperback
Although the text is awkwardly laid out in three-column pages, the content of the book is excellent. The author focuses primarily on New Kingdom aspects of the Egyptian goddess Hathor, explaining her importance in history, religion, myth and art; and discusses Hathor's influence on Hatshepsut's reign. With black and white illustrations, the book is informative to those researching the role of women and Hathor.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Lazaro Lopez on March 27, 2001
Format: Paperback
This book is by far one of the most insightful books on Ancient Egyptian Theology. Ms. Roberts brings to light much information often neglected by "egyptologists" bent on focusing only on the male aspect of the very complicated Egyptian Cosmologies. The importance of Hathor in the roles of Kingship is a subject that I found fascinating and helped me understand more fully how the Egyptians viewed their Kings (and Queens)and the world around them. This is a must read for anyone bogged down by the out-dated material previously printed on the Egyptian Pantheon.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Xanetia07 on May 20, 2005
Format: Paperback
It's so refreshing to read a book such as this one which explores the feminine aspects of the Egyptian Pantheon in depth. The book appears well researched and the author comes across as having a very genuine interest Hathor and her impact on Egyptian life.

I really enjoyed this book and would recommend it to anyone wanting more than the 'this is this, that is that' you often find in books covering Egyptian Gods and Goddesses.
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19 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Wadjet on March 8, 2005
Format: Paperback
If you are a New Ager who thinks Gerald Massey, Alvin Kuhn and R.Schwaller de Lubicz have the inside track on Egyptian religion, this isn't the book for you. Try the fantasy/New Age section where those books of creative fiction belong.

If, like one reviewer on this page, you are unaware that Hatshepsut did not have a son (only a step-son/nephew) and most recent historical research suggests that he did not kill her or even dismantle her monuments, you might need to brush up on your history in a decent and recent history book before heading into this complex topic. This is a book which presumes a knowledge of ancient Egypt greater than one can pick up in historical novels or trips down the Nile.

If, on the other hand, you have a genuine interest in scholarly study of ancient Egyptian religion, especially the much-neglected feminine aspect you will find this book useful and interesting. This is particularly true since similar good books on Egyptian goddesses are either not in English or prohibitively expensive.
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