The Origins of the World's Mythologies

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9780199812851: The Origins of the World's Mythologies

This remarkable book is the most ambitious work on mythology since that of the renowned Mircea Eliade, who all but single-handedly invented the modern study of myth and religion. Focusing on the oldest available texts, buttressed by data from archeology, comparative linguistics and human population genetics, Michael Witzel reconstructs a single original African source for our collective myths, dating back some 100,000 years. Identifying features shared by this "Out of Africa" mythology and its northern Eurasian offshoots, Witzel suggests that these common myths--recounted by the communities of the "African Eve"--are the earliest evidence of ancient spirituality. Moreover these common features, Witzel shows, survive today in all major religions. Witzel's book is an intellectual hand grenade that will doubtless generate considerable excitement--and consternation--in the scholarly community. Indeed, everyone interested in mythology will want to grapple with Witzel's extraordinary hypothesis about the spirituality of our common ancestors, and to understand what it tells us about our modern cultures and the way they are linked at the deepest level.

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About the Author:


E.J. Michael Witzel is Wales Professor of Sanskrit at Harvard University.

Review:


"Not since Frazer's Golden Bough has anyone achieved such a grand synthesis of world mythology. Boldly swimming upstream against the present scholarly emphasis on difference and context, Witzel assembles massive evidence for a single, prehistoric, Ur-mythology. An astonishing book."--Wendy Doniger, Mircea Eliade Distinguished Service Professor of the History of Religions at the University of Chicago and author of The Woman Who Pretended to Be Who She Was


"[Witzel's] novel approach brings a different perspective to the myths he analyzes. By all rights, this book should provoke debate and is, therefore, indispensable to any research library. Summing Up: Essential." --CHOICE


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E.J. Michael Witzel
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ISBN 10: 0199812853 ISBN 13: 9780199812851
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Descripción Oxford University Press. Estado de conservación: New. Brand New. Nº de ref. de la librería 0199812853

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E. J. Michael Witzel
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ISBN 10: 0199812853 ISBN 13: 9780199812851
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Descripción Oxford University Press Inc, United States, 2013. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. Language: English . Brand New Book ***** Print on Demand *****.In this comprehensive book Michael Witzel persuasively demonstrates the prehistoric origins of most of the mythologies of Eurasia and the Americas ( Laurasia ). By comparing these myths with others indigenous to sub-Saharan Africa, Melanesia, and Australia ( Gondwana Land ) Witzel is able to access some of the earliest myths told by humans. The Laurasian mythologies share a common story line that dates the world s creation to a mythic time and recounts the fortunes of generations of deities across four or five ages and human beings creation and fall, culminating in the end of the universe and, occasionally, hope for a new world. These stories are contrasted with the southern mythologies, which lack most of these features. Witzel s investigations are buttressed by archaeological data, as well as by comparative linguistics, and human population genetics. All suggest the African origins of anatomically modern humans and their subsequent journey along Indian Ocean shores, up to Australia and southern China, around 60,000 BCE. These itinerants early mythology survives partly in sub-Saharan Africa and points along the path - the Andaman Islands, Melansia, and Australia.Laurasian mythology, Witzel shows, developed along this vast trail, probably in southwest Asia, around 40,000 BCE. Identifying features shared by virtually all mythologies of the globe, Witzel suggests that these features probably informed myths recounted by the communities of the African Eve. As such, they are the earliest substantiation of our ultimate ancestors spirituality. Moreover the Laurasian myths key features, Witzel shows, survive today in all major religions and their multiple ideological offshoots. Nº de ref. de la librería AAV9780199812851

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E. J. Michael Witzel
Editorial: Oxford University Press Inc, United States (2013)
ISBN 10: 0199812853 ISBN 13: 9780199812851
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Descripción Oxford University Press Inc, United States, 2013. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. Language: English . Brand New Book ***** Print on Demand *****. In this comprehensive book Michael Witzel persuasively demonstrates the prehistoric origins of most of the mythologies of Eurasia and the Americas ( Laurasia ). By comparing these myths with others indigenous to sub-Saharan Africa, Melanesia, and Australia ( Gondwana Land ) Witzel is able to access some of the earliest myths told by humans. The Laurasian mythologies share a common story line that dates the world s creation to a mythic time and recounts the fortunes of generations of deities across four or five ages and human beings creation and fall, culminating in the end of the universe and, occasionally, hope for a new world. These stories are contrasted with the southern mythologies, which lack most of these features. Witzel s investigations are buttressed by archaeological data, as well as by comparative linguistics, and human population genetics. All suggest the African origins of anatomically modern humans and their subsequent journey along Indian Ocean shores, up to Australia and southern China, around 60,000 BCE. These itinerants early mythology survives partly in sub-Saharan Africa and points along the path - the Andaman Islands, Melansia, and Australia.Laurasian mythology, Witzel shows, developed along this vast trail, probably in southwest Asia, around 40,000 BCE. Identifying features shared by virtually all mythologies of the globe, Witzel suggests that these features probably informed myths recounted by the communities of the African Eve. As such, they are the earliest substantiation of our ultimate ancestors spirituality. Moreover the Laurasian myths key features, Witzel shows, survive today in all major religions and their multiple ideological offshoots. Nº de ref. de la librería AAV9780199812851

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Descripción 2013. PAP. Estado de conservación: New. New Book. Shipped from US within 10 to 14 business days. Established seller since 2000. Nº de ref. de la librería VU-9780199812851

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Descripción Oxford University Press Inc. Paperback. Estado de conservación: new. BRAND NEW PRINT ON DEMAND., The Origins of the World's Mythologies, E. J. Michael Witzel, In this comprehensive book Michael Witzel persuasively demonstrates the prehistoric origins of most of the mythologies of Eurasia and the Americas ('Laurasia'). By comparing these myths with others indigenous to sub-Saharan Africa, Melanesia, and Australia ('Gondwana Land') Witzel is able to access some of the earliest myths told by humans. The Laurasian mythologies share a common story line that dates the world's creation to a mythic time and recounts the fortunes of generations of deities across four or five ages and human beings' creation and fall, culminating in the end of the universe and, occasionally, hope for a new world. These stories are contrasted with the 'southern' mythologies, which lack most of these features. Witzel's investigations are buttressed by archaeological data, as well as by comparative linguistics, and human population genetics. All suggest the African origins of anatomically modern humans and their subsequent journey along Indian Ocean shores, up to Australia and southern China, around 60,000 BCE. These itinerants' early mythology survives partly in sub-Saharan Africa and points along the path - the Andaman Islands, Melansia, and Australia. Laurasian mythology, Witzel shows, developed along this vast trail, probably in southwest Asia, around 40,000 BCE. Identifying features shared by virtually all mythologies of the globe, Witzel suggests that these features probably informed myths recounted by the communities of the 'African Eve.' As such, they are the earliest substantiation of our ultimate ancestors' spirituality. Moreover the Laurasian myths' key features, Witzel shows, survive today in all major religions and their multiple ideological offshoots. Nº de ref. de la librería B9780199812851

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Descripción OUP USA, 2013. PAP. Estado de conservación: New. New Book. Delivered from our UK warehouse in 3 to 5 business days. THIS BOOK IS PRINTED ON DEMAND. Established seller since 2000. Nº de ref. de la librería LQ-9780199812851

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Descripción Oxford University Press, 2016. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. PRINT ON DEMAND Book; New; Publication Year 2016; Not Signed; Fast Shipping from the UK. No. book. Nº de ref. de la librería ria9780199812851_lsuk

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Descripción Oxford University Press, Incorporated. Estado de conservación: Brand New. Dispatch Same Working Day, (Delivery 2-4 business days, Courier For Heavy/Expensive Items) Money Back Guarantee, Prompt Customer Service. Nº de ref. de la librería 42488819

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