The Palaeolithic Origins of Human Burial

Author: Paul Pettitt
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1136699104
Format: PDF, Mobi
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Humans are unique in that they expend considerable effort and ingenuity in disposing of the dead. Some of the recognisable ways we do this are visible in the Palaeolithic archaeology of the Ice Age. The Palaeolithic Origins of Human Burial takes a novel approach to the long-term development of human mortuary activity – the various ways we deal with the dead and with dead bodies. It is the first comprehensive survey of Palaeolithic mortuary activity in the English language. Observations in the modern world as to how chimpanzees behave towards their dead allow us to identify ‘core’ areas of behaviour towards the dead that probably have very deep evolutionary antiquity. From that point, the palaeontological and archaeological records of the Pliocene and Pleistocene are surveyed. The core chapters of the book survey the mortuary activities of early hominins, archaic members of the genus Homo, early Homo sapiens, the Neanderthals, the Early and Mid Upper Palaeolithic, and the Late Upper Palaeolithic world. Burial is a striking component of Palaeolithic mortuary activity, although existing examples are odd and this probably does not reflect what modern societies believe burial to be, and modern ways of thinking of the dead probably arose only at the very end of the Pleistocene. When did symbolic aspects of mortuary ritual evolve? When did the dead themselves become symbols? In discussing such questions, The Palaeolithic Origins of Human Burial offers an engaging contribution to the debate on modern human origins. It is illustrated throughout, includes up-to-date examples from the Lower to Late Upper Palaeolithic, including information hitherto unpublished.

The Palaeolithic Origins of Human Burial

Author: Paul Pettitt
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1136699090
Format: PDF, Docs
Download Now
Humans are unique in that they expend considerable effort and ingenuity in disposing of the dead. Some of the recognisable ways we do this are visible in the Palaeolithic archaeology of the Ice Age. The Palaeolithic Origins of Human Burial takes a novel approach to the long-term development of human mortuary activity – the various ways we deal with the dead and with dead bodies. It is the first comprehensive survey of Palaeolithic mortuary activity in the English language. Observations in the modern world as to how chimpanzees behave towards their dead allow us to identify ‘core’ areas of behaviour towards the dead that probably have very deep evolutionary antiquity. From that point, the palaeontological and archaeological records of the Pliocene and Pleistocene are surveyed. The core chapters of the book survey the mortuary activities of early hominins, archaic members of the genus Homo, early Homo sapiens, the Neanderthals, the Early and Mid Upper Palaeolithic, and the Late Upper Palaeolithic world. Burial is a striking component of Palaeolithic mortuary activity, although existing examples are odd and this probably does not reflect what modern societies believe burial to be, and modern ways of thinking of the dead probably arose only at the very end of the Pleistocene. When did symbolic aspects of mortuary ritual evolve? When did the dead themselves become symbols? In discussing such questions, The Palaeolithic Origins of Human Burial offers an engaging contribution to the debate on modern human origins. It is illustrated throughout, includes up-to-date examples from the Lower to Late Upper Palaeolithic, including information hitherto unpublished.

The Palaeolithic Origins of Human Burial

Author: Paul Pettitt
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 0203813308
Format: PDF, Mobi
Download Now
Humans are unique in that they expend considerable effort and ingenuity in disposing of the dead. Some of the recognisable ways we do this are visible in the Palaeolithic archaeology of the Ice Age. The Palaeolithic Origins of Human Burial takes a novel approach to the long-term development of human mortuary activity – the various ways we deal with the dead and with dead bodies. It is the first comprehensive survey of Palaeolithic mortuary activity in the English language. Observations in the modern world as to how chimpanzees behave towards their dead allow us to identify ‘core’ areas of behaviour towards the dead that probably have very deep evolutionary antiquity. From that point, the palaeontological and archaeological records of the Pliocene and Pleistocene are surveyed. The core chapters of the book survey the mortuary activities of early hominins, archaic members of the genus Homo, early Homo sapiens, the Neanderthals, the Early and Mid Upper Palaeolithic, and the Late Upper Palaeolithic world. Burial is a striking component of Palaeolithic mortuary activity, although existing examples are odd and this probably does not reflect what modern societies believe burial to be, and modern ways of thinking of the dead probably arose only at the very end of the Pleistocene. When did symbolic aspects of mortuary ritual evolve? When did the dead themselves become symbols? In discussing such questions, The Palaeolithic Origins of Human Burial offers an engaging contribution to the debate on modern human origins. It is illustrated throughout, includes up-to-date examples from the Lower to Late Upper Palaeolithic, including information hitherto unpublished.

The British Palaeolithic

Author: Paul Pettitt
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 0415674549
Format: PDF, Docs
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The British Palaeolithic provides the first academic synthesis of the entire British Palaeolithic, from the earliest occupation (currently understood to be around 980,000 years ago) to the end of the Ice Age. Landscape and ecology form the canvas for an explicitly interpretative approach aimed at understanding the how different hominin societies addressed the issues of life at the edge of the Pleistocene world. Commencing with a consideration of the earliest hominin settlement of Europe, the book goes on to examine the behavioural, cultural and adaptive repertoires of the first human occupants of Britain from an ecological perspective. These themes flow throughout the book as it explores subsequent occupational pulses across more than half a million years of Pleistocene prehistory, which saw Homo heidelbergensis, the Neanderthals and ultimately Homo sapiens walk these shores. The British Palaeolithic fills a major gap in teaching resources as well as in research by providing a current synthesis of the latest research on the period. This book represents the culmination of 40 years combined research in this area by two well known experts in the field, and is an important new text for students of British archaeology as well as for students and researchers of the continental Palaeolithic period.

The Palaeolithic Societies of Europe

Author: Clive Gamble
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 9780521658720
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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Clive Gamble's overview of Palaeolithic societies, building on his The Palaeolithic Settlement of Europe (1986).

Deviant Burial in the Archaeological Record

Author: Eileen M. Murphy
Publisher: Oxbow Books
ISBN: 1782975357
Format: PDF, Docs
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This edited volume contains twelve papers that present evidence on non-normative burial practices from the Neolithic through to Post-Medieval periods and includes case studies from some ten countries. It has long been recognised by archaeologists that certain individuals in a variety of archaeological cultures from diverse periods and locations have been accorded differential treatment in burial relative to other members of their society. These individuals can include criminals, women who died during childbirth, unbaptised infants, people with disabilities, and supposed revenants, to name but a few. Such burials can be identifiable in the archaeological record from an examination of the location and external characteristics of the grave site. Furthermore, the position of the body in addition to its association with unusual grave goods can be a further feature of atypical burials. The motivation behind such non-normative burial practices is also diverse and can be related to a wide variety of social and religious beliefs. It is envisaged that the volume will make a significant contribution towards our understanding of the complexities involved when dealing with non-normative burials in the archaeological record.

The Origins of Religion in the Paleolithic

Author: Gregory J. Wightman
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield
ISBN: 1442242906
Format: PDF, ePub
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How did religion emerge—and why? What are the links between behavior, environment, and religiosity? Diving millions of years into the past, to a time when human ancestors began grappling with issues of safety, worth, identity, loss, power, and meaning in complex and difficult environments, GregoryJ. Wightman explores the significance of goal-directed action and the rise of material culture for the advent of religiosity and ritual. The book opens by tackling questions of cognitive evolution and group psychology, and how these ideas can integrate with archaeological evidence such as stone tools, shell beads, and graves. In turn, it focuses on how human ancestors engaged with their environments, how those engagements became routine, and how, eventually, certain routines took on a recognizably ritualistic flavor. Wightman also critically examines the very real constraints on drawing inferences about prehistoric belief systems solely from limited material residues. Nevertheless, Wightman argues that symbolic objects are not merely illustrative of religion, but also constitutive of it; in the continual dance between brain and behavior, between internal and external environments, lie the seeds of ritual and religion. Weaving together insights from archaeology; anthropology; cognitive and cultural neuroscience; history and philosophy of religions; and evolutionary, social, and developmental psychology, Wightman provides an intricate, evidence-based understanding of religion’s earliest origins.

Apes and Human Evolution

Author: Russell H. Tuttle
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 0674073169
Format: PDF, ePub
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Russell Tuttle synthesizes a vast literature in primate evolution and behavior to explain how apes and humans evolved in relation to one another and why humans became a bipedal, tool-making, culture-inventing species distinct from other hominoids. He refutes the theory that we are sophisticated, instinctively aggressive and destructive killer apes.

Palaeolithic Cave Art at Creswell Crags in European Context

Author: Paul Pettitt
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 019929917X
Format: PDF, ePub
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A comprehensive and fully illustrated study, by an international team of experts, of the first British examples of cave art, discovered at Creswell Crags on the Derbyshire/Nottinghamshire border in 2003. This important discovery is contextualized by comparative, up-to-date studies of European cave art, from Spain, Portugal, France, and Italy.

Death Rituals Social Order and the Archaeology of Immortality in the Ancient World

Author: Colin Renfrew
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 1316368629
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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Modern archaeology has amassed considerable evidence for the disposal of the dead through burials, cemeteries and other monuments. Drawing on this body of evidence, this book offers fresh insight into how early human societies conceived of death and the afterlife. The twenty-seven essays in this volume consider the rituals and responses to death in prehistoric societies across the world, from eastern Asia through Europe to the Americas, and from the very earliest times before developed religious beliefs offered scriptural answers to these questions. Compiled and written by leading prehistorians and archaeologists, this volume traces the emergence of death as a concept in early times, as well as a contributing factor to the formation of communities and social hierarchies, and sometimes the creation of divinities.