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Cave paintings and the human spirit : the origin of creativity and belief

Author: David S Whitley
Publisher: Amherst, N.Y. : Prometheus Books, 2009.
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
"The magnificent prehistoric art discovered in caves throughout France and Spain raises many questions about early human culture. What do these superbly rendered paintings of horses, bison, and enigmatic human figures and symbols mean? How can we explain the sudden flourishing of artistic creativity at such a high level? And in what ways does this artwork reflect the underlying belief system, worldview, and life of  Read more...
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Material Type: Internet resource
Document Type: Book, Internet Resource
All Authors / Contributors: David S Whitley
ISBN: 9781591026365 1591026369
OCLC Number: 236082513
Description: 322 pages, [8] pages of plates : illustrations (some color) ; 24 cm
Contents: Three days at Chauvet. The world's earliest cave art ; Inside Chauvet --
Côa and the Coso connection. The dating game ; Finding Côa --
Meaning and madness in the upper paleolithic. The myth of ecstasy and the origins of religion : entry into the Volp caves ; Creativity and the emotional life of the shamans ; Art beyond belief : creativity and religion in perspective.
Responsibility: David S. Whitley.
More information:

Abstract:

"The magnificent prehistoric art discovered in caves throughout France and Spain raises many questions about early human culture. What do these superbly rendered paintings of horses, bison, and enigmatic human figures and symbols mean? How can we explain the sudden flourishing of artistic creativity at such a high level? And in what ways does this artwork reflect the underlying belief system, worldview, and life of the people who created it?" "In this fascinating discussion of ancient art and religion, Dr. David S. Whitley-one of the world's leading experts on cave paintings-guides the reader in an exploration of these intriguing questions, while sharing his firsthand experiences in visiting these exquisite, breathtaking sites." "To grasp what drove these ancient artists to create these masterpieces, and to understand the origin of myth and religion, as Whitley explains, is to appreciate what makes us human. Moreover, he broadens our understanding of the genesis of creativity and myth by proposing a radically new and original theory that weds two seemingly warring camps from separate disciplines." "Combining a colorful narrative describing Whitley's personal explorations at key archaeological sites with robust scientific research, Cave Paintings and the Human Spirit makes for engrossing reading. It provides a profound and poignant perspective on what it means to be human."--Jacket.

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