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Smoke, Flames, and the Human Body in Mesoamerican Ritual Practice - (Hardcover)

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"Epitomizing the radiating sun and perpetuating the cycles of life and time, fire was, and continues to be, a central force in the Mesoamerican cosmos. Mesoamericans understood heat and flames as animate forces that signified strength and vitality; the most powerful of individuals were embodied with immense heat. Moreover, fire was transformative; it was both a means to destroy and to transport offerings to otherworldly places. The importance of heat and flames is evident in a spectrum of ritual practices, ranging from the use of sweat baths to the burning of offerings. Human bodies were among the most valuable resources heated or consumed by fire. This volume addresses the traditions, circumstances, and practices that involved the burning of bodies and bone in order to move toward a better understanding of the ideologies behind these acts of body burning. It brings together scholars working across Mesoamerica who approach these dual themes (fire and the body) from different methodologies and interdisciplinary lenses. Each contributor uses fire on bodies as a cue to illuminate the deeper grounds of Mesoamerican ritual practice through time and space, while highlighting what is unique and distinct to each of the societies that shared its territories"--
Number of Pages: 471
Genre: Social Science
Series Title: Dumbarton Oaks Pre-Columbian Symposia and Colloquia
Format: Hardcover
Publisher: Harvard Univ Pr
Language: English
Street Date: June 4, 2018
TCIN: 53324289
UPC: 9780884024262
Item Number (DPCI): 248-61-8516
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$75.00
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