Cover, Title Page, Copyright

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pp. i-iv

Title Page

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Copyright

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Contents

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pp. v-v

Illustrations

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pp. vii-vii

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Acknowledgments

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pp. ix-x

As a first attempt to reexamine the way we look at, talk about, and write about ritual objects, my study is indebted to many people who helped make this book possible. For the financial support that created time for research and writing, I am grateful to the University of Pittsburgh Faculty of Arts and Sciences ...

Note to the Reader

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pp. xi-xii

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Introduction

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pp. 1-12

Death is an event of cataclysmic separation. The deceased, once appropriately disposed of, cannot be seen, touched, conversed with. So we use rituals and ritual objects to help bridge the gulf, suture the wound to the collective body of family and of community, and overcome a sense of powerlessness in the face ...

The Rituals of Death

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Chapter 1. Death in the Fourteenth Century

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pp. 15-49

Many societies in far-flung parts of the ancient world developed surprisingly similar ideas about death and how best to deal with it. For example, archaeological evidence from ancient Etruria (ca. 500 BCE), which included tomb goods such as vessels for cooking, toilet articles, and armor, suggests that the Etruscans believed ...

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Chapter 2. Funerals in the Fifteenth Century

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pp. 50-79

By the first half of the fifteenth century, changes had been made to the basic structure of the funeral that resulted in the codification of key rituals, or at least parts of them. The most extensive evidence of that systematization can be seen in the descriptions of the lying-in-state period of the corpse and of the ...

The Material Culture of Death

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Chapter 3. Objects of Separation and Containment

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pp. 83-112

In medieval Japan an astounding variety of forms and materials were used to enclose the body after death so as to separate the dead from the living. Few have been preserved, for the obvious reason that they were generally buried, burned, or otherwise destroyed. Fortunately, some basic knowledge about what materials ...

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Chapter 4. Ritual Implements for Funerals and Memorials

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pp. 113-146

The implements that accompanied Japanese funeral rituals and death memorials are still plentiful; they were produced by workshops to be durable and to perform particular functions. Bronze candleholders and many other intriguing appurtenances of religious practices are housed today in major museums. The ...

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Chapter 5. Portraits of the Deceased

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pp. 147-177

The common view of a portrait is that it represents a specific individual, either historical or legendary. A portrait, however, is that and more.1 The making of portraits in the West has been described as “a response to the natural human tendency to think about oneself, of oneself in relation to others, and of others ...

Notes

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pp. 178-217

List of Japanese Words

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pp. 219-229

Bibliography

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pp. 231-248

Index

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pp. 249-259

About the Author

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Back Cover

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Image Plates

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