The Goddess and the Bull: Catalhoyuk: An Archaeological Journey to the Dawn of Civilization
Thousands of years before the pyramids were built in Egypt and the Trojan War was fought, a great civilization arose on the Anatolian plains. The Goddess and the Bull details the dramatic quest by archaeologists to unearth the buried secrets of human cultural evolution at this huge, spectacularly well-preserved 9,500-year-old village in Turkey.
Here lie the origins of modern society -- the dawn of art, architecture, religion, family -- even the first tangible evidence of human self-awareness, the world's oldest mirrors. Some archaeologists have claimed that the Mother Goddess was first worshipped at Çatalhöyük, which is now a site of pilgrimage for Goddess worshippers from all over the world. The excavations here have yielded the seeds of the Neolithic Revolution, when prehistoric humans first abandoned the hunter-gatherer life they had known for millions of years, invented farming, and began living in houses and communities.
Michael Balter, the excavation's official biographer, brings readers behind the scenes, providing the first inside look at the remarkable site and its history of scandal and thrilling scientific discovery. He tells the very human story of two colorful men: British archaeologist James Mellaart, who discovered Çatalhöyük in 1958 only to be banned from working at the site forever after a fabulous ancient treasure disappeared without a trace; and Ian Hodder, a pathbreaking archaeological rebel who reinvented the way archaeology is practiced and reopened the excavation after it had lain dormant for three decades. Today Hodder leads an international team of more than one hundred archaeologists who continue to probe the site's secrets.
Balter reveals the true story behind modern archaeology -- the thrill of history-making scientific discovery as well as the crushing disappointments, the community and friendship, the love affairs, and the often bitter rivalries between warring camps of archaeologists.
Along the way, Balter describes the cutting-edge advances in archaeological science that have allowed the team at Çatalhöyük to illuminate the central questions of human existence.
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The goddess and the bullUser Review - Not Available - Book Verdict
When he began visiting the 9500-year-old Turkish village of atalhyk in 1998 as a reporter for the journal Science , Balter was designated "biographer" of the dig by the team working there. Here he ... Read full review
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agriculture Anatolian Studies Ankara anthropologists archaeologists Arlette Mellaart artifacts As¸ikli Ayfer Bahn Bas¸ak began BIAA Binford British building burials Cambridge Çatal Çatalhöyük cattle Cauvin Cessford chaeology Christine Hastorf Colin Renfrew Craig cultural Çumra David French difﬁcult digging domesticated Dorak early East Eleni Encyclopĉdia Britannica excavator diary ﬁeld ﬁgure ﬁgurines ﬁnally ﬁnd ﬁndings ﬁre ﬁrst ﬁve ﬂoors Gimbutas goddess Hacilar höyük human Ian Hodder Ian Todd Ian’s Ibid Institute of Archaeology Interview with Ian Interview with James Istanbul James Mellaart Konya Konya Plain later layers levels Lewis Binford lived London Louise and Rissa Louise Martin Mira mound mud-brick Museum Naomi Hamilton Natuﬁan Neolithic Revolution Nerissa Russell obsidian ofﬁcial Opovo plaster pottery prehistoric radiocarbon dating reﬂected Renfrew Rissa Roger Matthews Ruth Tringham scientiﬁc season Selevac settlement Shahina Farid skeletons skull social south area specialists symbolic tion took Turkey Turkish University village Wendy Matthews wild women wrote