The Seven Day Circle: The History and Meaning of the Week

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University of Chicago Press, Mar 15, 1989 - History - 206 pages
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"Days, months, and years were given to us by nature, but we invented the week for ourselves. There is nothing inevitable about a seven-day cycle, or about any other kind of week; it represents an arbitrary rhythm imposed on our activities, unrelated to anything in the natural order. But where the week exists—and there have been many cultures where it doesn't—it is so deeply embedded in our experience that we hardly ever question its rightness, or think of it as an artificial convention; for most of us it is a matter of 'second nature.'
  

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Contents

The Origins of the SevenDay Week
7
The SevenDay Wars
29
Cultural Variations on a Theme
46
The Harmonics of Timekeeping
62
Living with the Week
85
Experiencing the Week
109
Culture Not Nature
132
Notes
144
Bibliography
174
Author Index
193
Subject Index
201
Copyright

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Page 6 - And on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made. And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it: because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made.

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About the author (1989)

Eviatar Zerubavel is professor of sociology at Rutgers University. His books include Hidden Rhythms: Schedules and Calendars in Social Life and Patterns of Time in Hospital Life: A Sociological Perspective.


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