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The Genesis of East Asia examines in a comprehensive and novel way the critically formative period when a culturally coherent geopolitical region identifiable as East Asia first took shape. By sifting through an impressive array of both primary material and modern interpretations, Charles Holcombe unravels what “East Asia” means, and why. He brings to bear archaeological, textual, and linguistic evidence to elucidate how the region developed through mutual stimulation and consolidation from its highly plural origins into what we now think of as the nation-states of China, Japan, Korea, and Vietnam. Beginning with the Qin dynasty conquest of 221 B.C. which brought large portions of what are now Korea and Vietnam within China’s frontiers, the book goes on to examine the period of intense interaction that followed with the many scattered local tribal cultures then under China’s imperial sway as well as across its borders. Even the distant Japanese islands could not escape being profoundly transformed by developments on the mainland. Eventually, under the looming shadow of the Chinese empire, independent native states and civilizations matured for the first time in both Japan and Korea, and one frontier region, later known as Vietnam, moved toward independence. Exhaustively researched and engagingly written, this study of state formation in East Asia will be required reading for students and scholars of ancient and medieval East Asian history. It will be invaluable as well to anyone interested in the problems of ethno-nationalism in the post-Cold War era.
In this exclusive English edition of the elucidating and award-winning investigation of Archimedes’ life, Mario Geymonat provides fresh insights into one of the greatest minds in the history of humankind. Archimedes (ca 287 BCE–ca 212 BCE) was a mathematician, physicist, scientist, and engineer. Born in Syracuse, Sicily, the Greek Archimedes was an inventor par excellence. He not only explored the displacement of water and sand, worked out the principle of levers, developed an approximation of pi, discovered ways to determine the areas and volumes of solids, and invented the monumental Archimedes’ screw (a machine for raising water), Archimedes also developed machinery that his fellow Syracusans successfully employed to defend their native city against the Romans. The Great Archimedes is already a highly acclaimed telling of the life and mind of one of antiquity’s most important and innovative thinkers, and, now in translation, it is sure to be cherished by experts and novices alike across the English-speaking world. This wonderfully illustrated and multifarious book is enriched by numerous quotations and testimonies from ancient sources.
Greek Prostitutes in the Ancient Mediterranean, 800 BCE–200 CE challenges the often-romanticized view of the prostitute as an urbane and liberated courtesan by examining the social and economic realities of the sex industry in Greco-Roman culture. Departing from the conventional focus on elite society, these essays consider the Greek prostitute as displaced foreigner, slave, and member of an urban underclass.
The contributors draw on a wide range of material and textual evidence to discuss portrayals of prostitutes on painted vases and in the literary tradition, their roles at symposia (Greek drinking parties), and their place in the everyday life of the polis. Reassessing many assumptions about the people who provided and purchased sexual services, this volume yields a new look at gender, sexuality, urbanism, and economy in the ancient Mediterranean world.
Perfection in Imperfection
Gregory I (590-604) is often considered the first medieval pope and the first exponent of a truly medieval spirituality. Carole Straw places Gregory in his historical context and considers the many facets of his personality—monk, preacher, and pope—in order to elucidate the structure of his thought and present a unified, thematic interpretation of his spiritual concerns.
An Archaeological Find and Its Mediterranean Context
When Shelley Wachsmann began his analysis of the small ship model excavated by assistants of famed Egyptologist W. M. F. Petrie in Gurob, Egypt, in 1920, he expected to produce a brief monograph that would shed light on the model and the ship type that it represented. Instead, Wachsmann discovered that the model held clues to the identities and cultures of the enigmatic Sea Peoples, to the religious practices of ancient Egypt and Greece, and to the oared ships used by the Bronze Age Mycenaean Greeks.
Although found in Egypt, the prototype of the Gurob model was clearly an Aegean-style galley of a type used by both the Mycenaeans and the Sea Peoples. The model is the most detailed representation presently known of this vessel type, which played a major role in changing the course of world history. Contemporaneous textual evidence for Sherden—one of the Sea Peoples—settled in the region suggests that the model may be patterned after a galley of that culture. Bearing a typical Helladic bird-head decoration topping the stempost, with holes along the sheer strakes confirming the use of stanchions, the model was found with four wheels and other evidence for a wagon-like support structure, connecting it with European cultic prototypes.
The online resources that accompany the book illustrate Wachsmann’s research and analysis. They include 3D interactive models that allow readers to examine the Gurob model on their computers as if held in the hand, both in its present state and in two hypothetical reconstructions. The online component also contains high-resolution color photos of the model, maps and satellite photos of the site, and other related materials. Offering a wide range of insights and evidence for linkages among ancient Mediterranean peoples and traditions, The Gurob Ship-Cart Model and Its Mediterranean Context presents an invaluable asset for anyone interested in the complexities of cultural change in the eastern Mediterranean at the end of the Bronze Age and the beginning of the Iron Age.
The Mesoamerican World and the Legacy of Linda Schele
This accessible, state-of-the-art review of Mayan hieroglyphics and cosmology also serves as a tribute to one of the field's most noted pioneers.
The core of this book focuses on the current study of Mayan hieroglyphics as inspired by the recently deceased Mayanist Linda Schele. As author or coauthor of more than 200 books or articles on the Maya, Schele served as the chief disseminator of knowledge to the general public about this ancient Mesoamerican culture, similar to the way in which Margaret Mead introduced anthropology and the people of Borneo to the English-speaking world.
Twenty-five contributors offer scholarly writings on subjects ranging from the ritual function of public space at the Olmec site and the gardens of the Great Goddess at Teotihuacan to the understanding of Jupiter in Maya astronomy and the meaning of the water throne of Quirigua Zoomorph P. The workshops on Maya history and writing that Schele conducted in Guatemala and Mexico for the highland people, modern descendants of the Mayan civilization, are thoroughly addressed as is the phenomenon termed "Maya mania"—the explosive growth of interest in Maya epigraphy, iconography, astronomy, and cosmology that Schele stimulated. An appendix provides a bibliography of Schele's publications and a collection of Scheleana, written memories of "the Rabbit Woman" by some of her colleagues and students.
Of interest to professionals as well as generalists, this collection will stand as a marker of the state of Mayan studies at the turn of the 21st century and as a tribute to the remarkable personality who guided a large part of that archaeological research for more than two decades.
Vol. 34 (2007) through current issue
Helios is a forum for the scholarly synthesis of close readings of philological text with contemporary critical approaches. Articles analyzing Greek and Roman literature and cultural history employ feminist theory, poststructuralism and deconstruction, psychoanalysis, reader-response theory, and current theoretical models.
Archaeology, Language, and Identity in Greek Central Asia
In the aftermath of Alexander the Great’s conquests in the late fourth century BC, Greek garrisons and settlements were established across Central Asia, through Bactria (modern-day Afghanistan) and into India. Over the next three hundred years, these settlements evolved into multiethnic, multilingual communities as much Greek as they were indigenous. To explore the lives and identities of the inhabitants of the Graeco-Bactrian and Indo-Greek kingdoms, Rachel Mairs marshals a variety of evidence, from archaeology, to coins, to documentary and historical texts. Looking particularly at the great city of Ai Khanoum, the only extensively excavated Hellenistic period urban site from Central Asia, Mairs explores how these ancient people lived, communicated, and understood themselves. Significant and original, The Hellenistic Far East will highlight Bactrian studies as an important part of our understanding of the ancient world.
This authoritative and sweeping compendium, the second volume in Getzel Cohen's organized survey of the Greek settlements founded or refounded in the Hellenistic period, provides historical narratives, detailed references, citations, and commentaries on all the settlements in Syria, The Red Sea Basin, and North Africa from 331 to 31 BCE. Organized geographically, the volume pulls together discoveries and debates from dozens of widely scattered archaeological and epigraphic projects. Cohen's magisterial breadth of focus enables him to provide more than a compilation of information; the volume also contributes to ongoing questions and will point the way toward new avenues of inquiry.