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Deciphering Ancient Minds


Author : J. David Lewis-Williams
language : en
Publisher:
Release Date : 2011


Download Deciphering Ancient Minds written by J. David Lewis-Williams and has been published by this book supported file pdf, txt, epub, kindle and other format this book has been release on 2011 with Art categories.


How did prehistoric peoples those living before written records think? Were their modes of thought fundamentally different from ours today? Researchers over the years have certainly believed so. Along with the Aborigines of Australia, the indigenous San people of southern Africa among the last hunter-gatherer societies on Earth became iconic representatives of all our distant ancestors, and were viewed either as irrational fantasists or childlike, highly spiritual conservationists. Since the 1960s, a new wave of research among the San and their world-famous rock art has overturned these misconceived ideas. Here, the great authority David Lewis-Williams and his colleague Sam Challis reveal how analysis of the rock paintings and engravings can be made to yield vital insights into San beliefs and ways of thought. The picture that emerges is very different from past analysis: this art is not a naïve narrative of daily life but rather is imbued with power and religious depth. As this elegantly written, enlightening book so ably demonstrates, the prehistoric mind was in fact as complex and sophisticated as that of contemporary humans.

Deciphering Ancient Minds The Mystery Of San Bushmen Rock Art


Author : David Lewis-Williams
language : en
Publisher: Thames & Hudson
Release Date : 2011-06-01


Download Deciphering Ancient Minds The Mystery Of San Bushmen Rock Art written by David Lewis-Williams and has been published by Thames & Hudson this book supported file pdf, txt, epub, kindle and other format this book has been release on 2011-06-01 with Social Science categories.


Goes to the heart of contemporary arguments about the "primitive" and the "modern" minds, and draws new social, anthropological, and ethnographic conclusions about the nature of ancient societies. How did ancient peoples—those living before written records—think? Were their thinking patterns fundamentally different from ours today? Researchers over the years have certainly believed so. Along with the Aborigines of Australia, the indigenous San people of southern Africa—among the last hunter-gatherer societies on Earth—became iconic representatives of all our distant ancestors and were viewed as either irrational fantasists or childlike, highly spiritual conservationists. Since the 1960s a new wave of research among the San and their world-famous rock art has overturned these misconceived ideas. Here, the great authority David Lewis-Williams and his colleague Sam Challis reveal how analysis of the rock paintings and engravings can be made to yield vital insights into San beliefs and ways of thought. This is possible because we possess comprehensive transcriptions, made in the nineteenth century, of interviews with San informants who were shown copies of the art and gave their interpretations of it. Using the analogy of the Rosetta Stone, the authors move back and forth between these San texts and the rock art, teasing out the subtle meanings behind both. The picture that emerges is very different from past analysis: this art is not a naive narrative of daily life but rather is imbued with power and religious depth.

The Mind In The Cave Consciousness And The Origins Of Art


Author : David Lewis-Williams
language : en
Publisher: Thames & Hudson
Release Date : 2004-04-17


Download The Mind In The Cave Consciousness And The Origins Of Art written by David Lewis-Williams and has been published by Thames & Hudson this book supported file pdf, txt, epub, kindle and other format this book has been release on 2004-04-17 with Art categories.


The breathtakingly beautiful art created deep inside the caves of western Europe has the power to dazzle even the most jaded observers. Emerging from the narrow underground passages into the chambers of caves such as Lascaux, Chauvet, and Altamira, visitors are confronted with symbols, patterns, and depictions of bison, woolly mammoths, ibexes, and other animals. Since its discovery, cave art has provoked great curiosity about why it appeared when and where it did, how it was made, and what it meant to the communities that created it. David Lewis-Williams proposes that the explanation for this lies in the evolution of the human mind. Cro-Magnons, unlike the Neanderthals, possessed a more advanced neurological makeup that enabled them to experience shamanistic trances and vivid mental imagery. It became important for people to "fix," or paint, these images on cave walls, which they perceived as the membrane between their world and the spirit world from which the visions came. Over time, new social distinctions developed as individuals exploited their hallucinations for personal advancement, and the first truly modern society emerged. Illuminating glimpses into the ancient mind are skillfully interwoven here with the still-evolving story of modern-day cave discoveries and research. The Mind in the Cave is a superb piece of detective work, casting light on the darkest mysteries of our earliest ancestors while strengthening our wonder at their aesthetic achievements.

Conceiving God The Cognitive Origin And Evolution Of Religion


Author : David Lewis-Williams
language : en
Publisher: Thames & Hudson
Release Date : 2010-03-01


Download Conceiving God The Cognitive Origin And Evolution Of Religion written by David Lewis-Williams and has been published by Thames & Hudson this book supported file pdf, txt, epub, kindle and other format this book has been release on 2010-03-01 with Religion categories.


A controversial exploration of the origin of religion in the neurology of the human brain. In this book the noted cognitive archaeologist David Lewis-Williams confronts a question that troubles many people in the world today: Is there a supernatural realm that intervenes in the material world of daily life and leads to the evolution of religions? Professor Lewis-Williams first describes how science developed within the cocoon of religion and then shows how the natural functioning of the human brain creates experiences that can lead to belief in a supernatural realm, beings, and interventions. Once people have these experiences, they formulate beliefs about them, and thus creeds are born. Forty thousand years ago, people were leaving traces in the archaeological record of activities that we can label religious, and Lewis-Williams discusses in detail the evidence preserved in the Volp Caves in France. He also shows that mental imagery produced by the functioning of the human brain can be detected in widely separated religious communities such as Hildegard of Bingen’s in medieval Europe or the San hunters of southern Africa.

Images Of Power


Author : James David Lewis-Williams
language : en
Publisher:
Release Date : 1989-01-01


Download Images Of Power written by James David Lewis-Williams and has been published by this book supported file pdf, txt, epub, kindle and other format this book has been release on 1989-01-01 with Africa, Southern categories.




San Rock Art


Author : J.D. Lewis-Williams
language : en
Publisher: Ohio University Press
Release Date : 2013-02-15


Download San Rock Art written by J.D. Lewis-Williams and has been published by Ohio University Press this book supported file pdf, txt, epub, kindle and other format this book has been release on 2013-02-15 with Art categories.


San rock paintings, scattered over the range of southern Africa, are considered by many to be the very earliest examples of representational art. There are as many as 15,000 known rock art sites, created over the course of thousands of years up until the nineteenth century. There are possibly just as many still awaiting discovery. Taking as his starting point the magnificent Linton panel in the Iziko-South African Museum in Cape Town, J. D. Lewis-Williams examines the artistic and cultural significance of rock art and how this art sheds light on how San image-makers conceived their world. It also details the European encounter with rock art as well as the contentious European interaction with the artists’ descendants, the contemporary San people.

Inside The Neolithic Mind Consciousness Cosmos And The Realm Of The Gods


Author : David Lewis-Williams
language : en
Publisher: Thames & Hudson
Release Date : 2005-10-01


Download Inside The Neolithic Mind Consciousness Cosmos And The Realm Of The Gods written by David Lewis-Williams and has been published by Thames & Hudson this book supported file pdf, txt, epub, kindle and other format this book has been release on 2005-10-01 with Social Science categories.


An exploration of how brain structure and cultural content interacted in the Neolithic period 10,000 years ago to produce unique life patterns and belief systems. What do the headless figures found in the famous paintings at Catalhoyuk in Turkey have in common with the monumental tombs at Newgrange and Knowth in Ireland? How can the concepts of "birth," "death," and "wild" cast light on the archaeological enigma of the domestication of cattle? What generated the revolutionary social change that ended the Upper Palaeolithic? David Lewis-Williams's previous book, The Mind in the Cave, dealt with the remarkable Upper Palaeolithic paintings, carvings, and engravings of western Europe. Here Dr. Lewis-Williams and David Pearce examine the intricate web of belief, myth, and society in the succeeding Neolithic period, arguably the most significant turning point in all human history, when agriculture became a way of life and the fractious society that we know today was born. The authors focus on two contrasting times and places: the beginnings in the Near East, with its mud-brick and stone houses each piled on top of the ruins of another, and western Europe, with its massive stone monuments more ancient than the Egyptian pyramids. They argue that neurological patterns hardwired into the brain help explain the art and society that Neolithic people produced. Drawing on the latest research, the authors skillfully link material on human consciousness, imagery, and religious concepts to propose provocative new theories about the causes of an ancient revolution in cosmology and the origins of social complexity. In doing so they create a fascinating neurological bridge to the mysterious thought-lives of the past and reveal the essence of a momentous period in human history. 100 illustrations, 20 in color.