Ancient Goddesses: The Myths and the Evidence

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Lucy Goodison, Christine Morris
University of Wisconsin Press, 1998 - Bibles - 224 pages
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The nurturing Earth Goddess, the Great Mother worshipped at the dawn of civilization—historical fact or consoling fiction?

    While Goddess mythologies proliferate and the public devours books by artists, psychotherapists, and enthusiastic amateurs, it is remarkable that those in the field of prehistory have remained largely silent. Did Goddess worship really exist? What actually remains from the earliest cultures, and what can it tell us? What can we learn about the early stages of human religion from the study of prehistoric carvings, pictures, pottery, figurines, and temples?
    In Ancient Goddesses, historians and archaeologists write accessibly about this intriguing and controversial topic for the first time. Considering a number of significant early civilizations—Predynastic and Early Dynastic Egypt; “Old Europe;” Early North West Europe; “Celtic” civilization; the Prehistoric Aegean; Malta; the Ancient Near East; Old Testament Israel; Çatalhöyük; and Archaic Greece—these experts review the most recent evidence so that readers can make up their own minds.
    Contributors include Ruth Tringham and Margaret Conkey, University of California, Berkeley; Lynn Meskell, New College, Oxford; Fekri Hassan, University College, London; Karel van der Toorn, University of Amsterdam; Joan Westenholz, Bible Lands Museum, Jerusalem; Elizabeth Shee Twohig, University College, Cork; Caroline Malone, New Hall, Cambridge; Mary Voyatzis, University of Arizona; and Miranda Green, University of Wales College.

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About the author (1998)

Lucy Goodison is an Honorary Research Fellow at University College London and has written several books on mythology and religion, specializing in the early Aegean. Christine Morris is Leventis Lecturer in Greek Archaeology in the School of Classics, Trinity College, Dublin.

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