- Beautiful Things and Bones of Desire: Emerging Issues in the Archaeology of Death and Burial
- Death, Memory, and Material Culture: Catalytic Commemoration and the Cremated Dead
- African Perspectives on Death, Burial, and Mortuary Archaeology
- The Place of Veneration in Early South Asian Buddhism
- The Archaeology of Death and Burial in the Islamic World
- Burial of the Christian Dead in the Later Middle Ages
- The Unburied Dead
- Upper Palaeolithic Mortuary Practices in Eurasia: A Critical Look at the Burial Record
- Power and Society: Mesolithic Europe
- Archaeological Study of Mortuary Practices in the Eastern United States
- The Living and the Dead in later Prehistoric Iberia
- The Powerful Dead of the Inca
- Land Ownership and Landscape Belief: Introduction and Contexts
- Megaliths in North-West Europe: The Cosmology of Sacred Landscapes
- Creating Death: An Archaeology of Dying
- Treating Bodies: Transformative and Communicative Practices
- Preserving the Body
- Cremations in Culture and Cosmology
- Identities in Transformation: Identities, Funerary Rites, and the Mortuary Process
- Death and Gender
- Ancient Identities: Age, Gender, and Ethnicity in Ancient Greek Burials
- Ethnicity and Gender in Roman Funerary Commemoration: Case Studies from the Empire's Frontiers
- Engendering Ancestors through Death Ritual in Ancient China
- Death, Emotion, and the Household among the Late Moche
- Belief and the Archaeology of Death
- Insights into Early Mortuary Practices of <i>Homo</i>
- Equipping and Stripping the Dead: A Case Study on the Procurement, Compilation, Arrangement, and Fragmentation of Grave Inventories in New Kingdom Thebes
Abstract and Keywords
Among modern humans, mortuary behaviours conform to established conventions of the particular society enacting them, yet they are present in all societies, thus providing a basis for analogies between the present and the past. The caveats for the use of such analogies are reviewed in the context of understanding early prehistoric mortuary practices. Taking these into consideration, the chapter speculates on the origins and diversification of mortuary practices as social phenomena, in relation to hominin taxonomy, on geographic and temporal scales. The chapter suggests that mortuary behaviours differ between Eurasia and Africa and are not necessarily a single-origin phenomenon. Exhibiting material simplicity, burials, and other mortuary practices in the Middle Palaeolithic are best understood within the emotional realm and symbolic context.
Erella Hovers is an associate professor at the Institute of Archaeology, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel. Her research focuses on the Levantine Middle Palaeolithic and the Middle Stone Age in the Horn of Africa, the emergence and evolution of symbolic culture as a material manifestation of cognitive and demographic changes She is involved in interdisciplinary multinational field projects in Israel (Amud Cave) and in Ethiopia, where she studies Late Pliocene and Early Pleistocene Oldowan sites in the Hadar site and MSA caves in eastern Ethiopia.
Anna Belfer-Cohen is a full professor at the Institute of Archaeology, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel. Her main interest lies in the domain of exploring prehistoric beginnings. She has researched extensively the Levantine Upper Palaeolithic which represents the flourishing and spread of modern humans on the one hand and the change-over from extractive to productive economies during the later part of that period (the Epipalaeolithic) on the other hand. She has participated in multidisciplinary and multinational excavation projects such as the excavations of Kebara and Hayonim caves in Israel and the Dzudzuana cave and Kotias Klde rockshelter in the Republic of Georgia.
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