Diversity of Sacrifice: Form and Function of
Sacrificial Practices in the Ancient World and Beyond
SUNY Press
Diversity of Sacrifice: Form and Function of Sacrificial Practices in the Ancient World and Beyond
Psychoanalytic Psychology Edited by Carrie Ann Murray

Hardcover: 290 pages

Publisher: SUNY Press
(June, 2016)

Language: English

Hardcover: $95.00
ISBN: 978-1-4384-5995-0

For information on ordering,
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Bringing together scholars from anthropology, archaeology, literature, and theology, Diversity of Sacrifice explores the power of sacrificial practices across a range of contexts—from prehistory to the present. Incorporating theory, material culture, and textual evidence, the volume considers new evidence and provides novel insights.

Sacrifice is a powerful means of transformation. The rite offers a means of communication with a deity, having profound effects on the lives of participants. The substances involved act as physical links between the mundane and the holy. Blood and wine, smoke and incense can travel into the earth or to the heavens—carrying with them the sacrificers’ vows and requests.

Eschewing reductive explanations, this collection considers divergent data from past and present cases, examining the cultural similarities and dissimilarities of sacrificial practices.

Carrie Ann Murray is Assistant Professor of Roman Art and Archaeology at Brock University.

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Table of Contents

The Value and Power of Sacrifice
Carrie Ann Murray

Part I. Defining and Redefining the Boundaries of Sacrifice

1. Anthropology and Sacrifice
Phillips Stevens Jr.

2. A View from a Fen: On the Concept of Sacrifice and the Possibility of Understanding Neolithic Wetland Depositions
Asa Berggren

3. Gifts from the Gods: A New Look at Some Weapons and Vessels from the Metal Ages
Christoph Huth

4. Post-Domestic Sacrifice: Exploring the Present and Future of Gifts for the Gods
Samantha Hurn

Part II. Sacrifice across the Mediterranean World

5. Every Good and Pure Thing: Sacrifice in the Ancient Egyptian Context
Mary-Ann Pouls Wegner

6. The Mythology of Carthaginian Child Sacrifice: A Physical Anthropological Perspective
Jeffrey H. Schwartz

7. The Art of Ancient Greek Sacrifice: Spectacle, Gaze, Performance
Tyler Jo Smith

8. Etruscan Human Sacrifice: The Case of Tarquinia
Nancy T. de Grummond

Part III. Exploring Exceptional Cases of Sacrifice

9. Human Sacrifice as “Crisis Management? The Case of the Early Neolithic Site of Herxheim, Palatinate, Germany
Andrea Zeeb-Lanz, Rose-Marie Arbogast, Silja Bauer, Bruno Boulestin, Anne-Sophie Coupey, Anthony Denaire, Fabian Haack, Christian Jeunesse, Dirk Schimmelpfennig, Rouven Turck

10. Dog Sacrifice at the Protohistoric Site of Mas Castellar (Pontos, Spain)
Enriqueta Pons, Lidia Colominas, Maria Saña

11. Understanding the Death and Burial of Northern European Bog Bodies
Guinevere Granite

Part IV. Formularizing and Regularizing Sacrifice

12. Sacrificing the Sign: The Alphabet as an Offering in Ancient Israel, or A Classicist’s Read on the Ritual Law of the Sotah
Roger D. Woodard

13. Ancient Greek Laws on Sacrifice
Michael Gagarin

14. In What Way Is Christ’s Death a Sacrifice? Theories of Sacrifice and Theologies of the Cross
S. Mark Heim


SUNY Press titles on display at a recent
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Psychoanalytic Psychology