- Paperback: 256 pages
- Publisher: Routledge; 1 edition (May 21, 2005)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0415345510
- ISBN-13: 978-0415345514
- Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 0.6 x 11.7 inches
- Shipping Weight: 14.9 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 1 customer review
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,463,609 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Ritual and Domestic Life in Prehistoric Europe 1st Edition
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He illustrates his thesis using observation of artifacts used by surviving traditional cultures, compares them with past artifacts, establishes functional usage and traces the intermediate steps. He takes common human behaviors and artifacts, links them across both geographic distance and time, then extrapolates to make generalizations which hold together much better than many traditional interpretations of fragmentary evidence from the deep past.
All of this is intuitively evident to those few of us who have actually lived on the land and discovered the rhythms of building, planting, tending crops and animals, and harvesting. But most of us live in an ever changing urban world where custom seldom lasts a season and there is no real emotional connection with the rituals of daily life. Most of us don't see ritual in our own lives. Instead we see it in the form of huge "sporting" and "concert" pageants, weddings, funerals, "The Academy Awards Ceremony" and countless other artificially staged events. So it is no wonder that for much of the last century anthropologists have made the mistake of assuming that artifacts and folkways either had an utilitarian purpose or a ritual one but not both simultaneously.
I'd recommend this well written and easily digested book as supplemental reading for any undergraduate anthropology, archeology or history major. It should also prove of interest to human systems engineers, architects and behavioral scientists.