Date of Thesis Acceptance
Major Department or Program
This thesis examines the unique mortuary practice of plastering skulls in the early farming communities of the Prehistoric Near East and the interpretations that have arisen to explain it. Over 73 skulls have been found throughout the Levant and they are confined both spatially and temporally to the Levant from the Middle to Late Pre-Pottery Neolithic B (8,600-7,500 cal BC). They have given rise to a multitude of interpretations, including ancestor veneration, “skull cult,” apotropaic objects, and many more. To understand the motivations behind plastering skulls I critique the previous work interpreting the ideological and ritualistic reasons behind them and give a comprehensive overview of the relevant geographical, economical, and archaeological and theoretical work that has been done on the sites where plastered skulls have been found.
Skull -- Reconstruction, Archaeology -- Plastered human skulls, Prehistoric peoples -- Societies, Middle East -- Levant -- Cyprus -- Egypt -- Iraq -- Israel -- Jordan -- Lebanon -- Palestine -- Syria -- Turkey, Neolithic period -- Society, Whitman College -- Dissertation collection 2017 -- Anthropology Department
Public Accessible Thesis
In Copyright. URI: http://rightsstatements.org/vocab/InC/1.0/
This Item is protected by copyright and/or related rights. You are free to use this Item in any way that is permitted by the copyright and related rights legislation that applies to your use. For other uses you need to obtain permission from the rights-holder(s).