This collection of essays explores relics as religious and cultural phenomena. It considers the ways in which human remains and material objects have become the focus of worship, celebrity, curiosity, and conflict in a range of eras and cultures stretching from antiquity to the twenty-first century.
Edited by Alexandra Walsham, this wide-ranging collection of essays is the first to explore the relic as a religious and cultural phenomenon in a broad comparative and interdisciplinary perspective. It considers the ways in which human remains and material objects have become the focus of worship, celebrity, curiosity, and conflict in a range of eras and cultures stretching from antiquity to the twenty-first century, and from Western Europe to the Middle East, Africa, Latin America, the Indian subcontinent and China. The contributors assess when and why bodies and belongings are revered as sacred by the adherents of different faiths, alongside the dynastic, ideological and ethnic contests and rivalries they have served to stimulate in a range of past societies. They examine the politics and economics of the identification, creation and use of relics and remains and their significance and function in the spheres of memory, history, and heritage. Bringing together historians, archaeologists, anthropologists and scholars of religion, the volume seeks to stimulate further research on this neglected but intriguing theme.
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1. Introduction: Relics and Remains ; 2. Divine of Body: The Remains of Egyptian Kings - Preservation, Reverence, and Memory in a World without Relics ; 3. Relics and Remains in an Ancient Greek World full of Anthropomorphic Gods ; 4. Rulers and Relics c.750-c.950: Treasure on Earth, Treasure in Heaven ; 5. Relics of Piety and Power in Medieval Islam ; 6. Skeletons in the Cupboard: Relics after the English Reformation ; 7. Grapho-Relics: Lutheranism and the Materialization of the World ; 8. Tongues, Toes, and Bones: Remembering Saints in Early Modern Bohemia ; 9. 'The Devil was in that Little Bone': The Portuguese Capture and Destruction of the Buddha's Tooth-Relic, Goa, 1516 ; 10. That Strange Business of Memory: Relic Forgert in Latin America ; 11. The Several Legs of Santa Anna: A Saga of Secular Relics ; 12. Mao's Travelling Mangoes: Food as Relic in Revolutionary China ; 13. What Remains? Anti-Communism, Forensic Archaeology, and the Retelling of the National Past in Lithuania and Romania ; 14. The Search for the Remains of Dedan Kimathi: The Politics of Death and Memoralization in Post-Colonial Kenya ; 15. Testimonies as Sacred Texts: The Sanctification of Holocaust Writing
Relics and Remains by Alexandra Walsham
Past and Present Supplement
Used - Like New
Oxford University Press
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