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The Goddesses and Gods of Old Europe: Myths and Cult Images, New and Updated Edition

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  1. Kaulika says

    important work in the field of archeology In this book, Gimbutas lays out what will become the field of archaeomythology – breaking the archaelogical taboo of reconstructing ancient culture, and expanding the boundaries of archaeology. The work is controversial and at times over-reaches itself in drawing far-reaching conclusions from existing archaeological evidence. However, this doesn’t make the work any less important.

  2. Jeri L. Studebaker "author Switching to Goddess" says

    Poor sweethearts It’s fascinating how panicked some get when they “read” Marija Gimbutas. Here’s just one example — from another reviewer of this book:”…It is *nonsense*, pure and simple … Gimbutas is trapped in the *foolish* ideology of the “great goddess”, a *pathetic* … reflex of contemporary political obsession…. leave it to Wiccans and other *ignorami*.”Gimbutas’ major theory is monumentally simple: During the early and middle Neolithic, most of southeastern Europe followed religions centering around female rather than male deity. [I can hear some of you hyperventilating already; just take a deep breath and fan yourselves.]In this and other of her books, Gimbutas serves up tons of evidence to back her theory. Rarely have I seen books so packed with concrete, clearly-presented evidence — not only archaeological, but linguistic and mythological as well.This, folks, is what science is all about. After you offer a theory and evidence to support it, others have three options: 1, offer evidence to support the theory; 2, offer evidence to support a counter theory; 3, offer nothing.Oddly enough, sweet little Gimbutas so terrifies otherwise sane individuals that they take one look at her and opt for a fourth response: going blithering off into the sunset, arms akimbo, frothing at the mouth and mumbling things like “Nonsense!” “Ignorami!” and “Political obsession!” (God forbid, the Martians are coming!).It does give one pause.Jeri Studebaker, author of

  3. JST "Peace Out" says

    As a book exploring an alternative theory of prehistoric religion, it is a great book. Do read it. As a layperson interested in mythology and archealogy, I did find this work to be very interesting, though over-scholarly for my taste. What was I expecting? A third-grade reader? Silly me. I choose to read it since it offers an alternate perspective to male-centric views. On that note, I wasn’t disappointed.It took awhile to build the backdrop for her evidence and interpretation, but I found it was helpful to do so. Any arguement that the “art” was less than perfect or was actually pathetic ignores the nature of prehistoric art – and Ms Gimbutas does address and explain why she choose the specific illustrations; mainly, to illustrate her points and to provide a visual for her narrative. Never did she claim it to be a book on art, and it should not be read as one nor critique as if it were one. Still, the illustrations were very helpful for this non-scholar.Her assertation that original religion was goddess based I am not qualified to critque, but still, her evidence, speculations, and interpretations do give one pause for thought, especially when one realizes and accepts that history has been perceived and presented from a male point of view. I tend to think, if not Goddess based, then perhaps prehistoric societies and religions were a lot more equalitarian than was origianlly supposed.Perhaps we have a lot to learn from our ancestors.The two negative reviews that I read did the typical name-calling attack as a defense without offering constructive counter-arguements.I trust the review by the scholar to be spot-on for those with academic interest or with a scholarly bend.As for me, I will look for the middle school reader on this subject while still giving this work praise.

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