Religion, Culture, and Sacred Space

Front Cover
Palgrave Macmillan, Sep 15, 2008 - Religion - 184 pages

This book proposes a new way of thinking about how a place becomes sacred and investigates the cultural considerations that influence the way a place becomes fixed in a society’s consciousness. Smith argues that intense emotional attachments to places are constructed by texts that attach a narrative to the physical landscape. Through an examination of a wide range of sites--including Abydos in ancient Egypt, Delos in classical Greece, and Mecca in medieval Islam—a new theory of the human relationship to space is elaborated. His is a theory that has implications for the way we go about preserving landscapes as well as the way we understand our own experience of the world.

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About the author (2008)

Martyn Smith is Assistant Professor of Religious Studies, Lawrence University. He maintains the website OldRoads.org, which has links to images and maps for the sites mentioned in this book.

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