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Look Inside The Birth of the Gods and the Origins of Agriculture

The Birth of the Gods and the Origins of Agriculture

$66.99 (C)

Part of New Studies in Archaeology

  • Date Published: August 2007
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521039086

$ 66.99 (C)

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About the Authors
  • This innovative study analyzes the great cultural and economic changes occurring in the Near East between 10,000 and 7,000 BC as Palaeolithic societies of hunter-gatherers gave way to village communities of Neolithic food-producers. Challenging the orthodox, materialist interpretations, and drawing on French theories of mentalities, Jacques Cauvin argues that the Neolithic revolution must be understood as an intellectual transformation, revealing itself above all in symbolic activities. He describes the emergence of the first agricultural villages, pastoralism and nomadism, and the diffusion of Neolithic ideas and practice to the region's periphery.

    • A novel approach influenced by philosophy, history of religion and ancient religions
    • Not a straightforward archaeological account of the Neolithic Revolution, but one that looks for the mainspring of changes in terms of cultural and psychological changes emerging around 12000 BC
    • Distinguished and wide-ranging author who has researched in the field of Neolithic origins for many years, working in Israel, Syria and Turkey
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    Reviews & endorsements

    "Recent references...and a postscript chapter update the second French edition, and numerous photographs and drawings add immeasurably to the volume's usefulness." Choice

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    Product details

    • Date Published: August 2007
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521039086
    • length: 288 pages
    • dimensions: 242 x 167 x 16 mm
    • weight: 0.46kg
    • contains: 69 b/w illus. 9 maps
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    List of plates
    List of figures
    Translator's note
    Chronological table
    Part I. The Origins of Agriculture:
    1. Natural environment and human cultures on the eve of the Neolithic
    2. The first pre-agricultural villages: the Natufian
    3. The Revolution in symbols and the origins of Neolithic religion
    4. The first farmers: the socio-cultural context
    5. The first farmers: strategies of subsistence
    6. Agriculture, population, society: an assessment
    7. The Neolithic Revolution: a transformation of the mind
    Part II. The Beginnings of Neolithic Diffusion:
    8. A geographical and chronological framework for the first stages of diffusion
    9. The birth of a culture in the northern Levant and the neolithisation of Anatolia
    10. Diffusion into the central and southern Levant
    11. The evidence of symbolism in the southern Levant
    12. The dynamics of a dominant culture
    Part III. The Great Exodus:
    13. The problem of diffusion in the Neolithic
    14. The completion of the neolithic process in the 'Levantine nucleus'
    15. The arrival of farmers on the Mediterranean littoral and in Cyprus
    16. The sedentary peoples push east: the eastern Jezirah and the Syrian desert
    17. Pastoral nomadism
    18. Hypotheses for the spread of the Neolithic

  • Author

    Jacques Cauvin, Institut de France, Paris


    Trevor Watkins, University of Edinburgh

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