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Review of Biblical Literature Blog

Performing Death: Social Analyses of Funerary Traditions in the Ancient Near East and Mediterranean
Laneri, Nicola, editor

Chicago: Oriental Institute, 2007 pp. xviii + 318. $24.95


Description: This volume represents a collection of contributions presented by the authors during the Second Annual University of Chicago Oriental Institute Seminar "Performing Death: Social Analyses of Funerary Traditions in the Ancient Mediterranean," held at the Oriental Institute, February 17-18, 2006. The principal aim of the two-day seminar was to interpret the social relevance resulting from the enactment of funerary rituals within the broad-reaching Mediterranean basin from prehistoric periods to the Roman age. Efforts were concentrated on creating a panel composed of scholars with diverse backgrounds -- anthropologists, historians, archaeologists, art historians, and philologists -- and the knowledge and expertise to enrich the discussion through the presentation of case-studies linked to both textual and archaeological evidences from the Mediterranean region. Fundamental to the successful realization of this research process was the active dialogue between scholars of different backgrounds. These communicative exchanges provided the opportunity to integrate different approaches and interpretations concerning the role played by the performance of ancient funerary rituals within a given society and, as a result, helped in defining a coherent outcome towards the interpretation of ancient communities' behaviors.

Subjects: Ancient Near East, Literature

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Review by Aren Maeir
Published 10/11/2009
Citation: Aren Maeir, review of Nicola Laneri, ed., Performing Death: Social Analyses of Funerary Traditions in the Ancient Near East and Mediterranean, Review of Biblical Literature [http://www.bookreviews.org] (2009).


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