Sacred darkness : a global perspective on the ritual use of caves

Book Cover
Boulder : University Press of Colorado, [2013].
Physical Desc:
xvii, 410 pages : illustrations, maps ; 29 cm.
ASU Colville Collection (See a Librarian)
BL580 .S2293 2013
Call Number
ASU Colville Collection (See a Librarian)
BL580 .S2293 2013
On Shelf
APA Citation (style guide)

Moyes, H. (2013). Sacred darkness: a global perspective on the ritual use of caves. Boulder: University Press of Colorado.

Chicago / Turabian - Author Date Citation (style guide)

Moyes, Holley. 2013. Sacred Darkness: A Global Perspective On the Ritual Use of Caves. Boulder: University Press of Colorado.

Chicago / Turabian - Humanities Citation (style guide)

Moyes, Holley, Sacred Darkness: A Global Perspective On the Ritual Use of Caves. Boulder: University Press of Colorado, 2013.

MLA Citation (style guide)

Moyes, Holley. Sacred Darkness: A Global Perspective On the Ritual Use of Caves. Boulder: University Press of Colorado, 2013. Print.

Note! Citation formats are based on standards as of July 2010. Citations contain only title, author, edition, publisher, and year published. Citations should be used as a guideline and should be double checked for accuracy.
Caves have been used in various ways across human society, but despite the persistence within popular culture of the iconic caveman, deep caves were never used primarily as habitation sites for early humans. Rather, in both ancient and contemporary contexts, caves have served primarily as ritual spaces. In Sacred Darkness , contributors use archaeological evidence as well as ethnographic studies of modern ritual practices to envision the cave as place of spiritual and ideological power that emerges as a potent venue for ritual practice.

Covering the ritual use of caves in Europe, Asia, Australia, Africa, Mesoamerica, and the US Southwest and Eastern woodlands, this book brings together case studies by prominent scholars whose research spans from the Paleolithic period to the present day. These contributions demonstrate that cave sites are as fruitful as surface contexts in promoting the understanding of both ancient and modern religious beliefs and practices.

This state-of-the-art survey of ritual cave use will be one of the most valuable resources for understanding the role of caves in studies of religion, sacred landscape, or cosmology and a must-read for any archaeologist interested in caves.

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9781607321774, 1607321777, 9781607321781, 1607321785


Includes bibliographical references and index.
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5050 |a Ritual cave use in European Paleolithic caves / Jean Clottes -- Constructed caves : transformations of the underworld in prehistoric southeast Italy / Robin Skeates -- Caves of the living, caves of the dead : experiences above and below ground in prehistoric Malta / Simon K.F. Stoddart and Caroline A.T. Malone -- Landscapes of ritual, identity, and memory : reconsidering Neolithic and Bronze Age cave use in Crete, Greece / Peter Tomkins -- Caves and the funerary landscape of prehistoric Britain / Andrew T. Chamberlain -- The subterranean landscape of the southern Levant during the Chalcolithic period / Yorke M. Rowan and David Ilan -- The chamber of secrets : grottoes, caves, and the underworld in ancient Egyptian religion / Stuart Tyson Smith -- Caves as sacred spaces on the Tibetan Plateau / Mark Aldenderfer -- Differential Australian cave and rockshelter use during the Pleistocene and Holocene / Paul S.C. Taçon, Wayne Brennan, Matthew Kelleher, and Dave Pross -- Caves as sacred space in Mesoamerica / Holley Moyes and James E. Brady -- Footsteps in the dark zone : ritual cave use in Southwest prehistory / Scott Nicolay -- Forty years' pursuit of human prehistory in the world underground / Patty Jo Watson -- A new overview of prehistoric cave art in the Southeast / Jan F. Simek, Alan Cressler, and Joseph Douglas -- Reevaluating cave records : the case for ritual caves in the eastern United States / Cheryl Claassen -- Ceremonial use of caves and rockshelters in Ohio / Olaf H. Prufer and Keith M. Prufer -- The ritual use of caves and rockshelters in Ozark prehistory / George Sabo III, Jerry E. Hilliard, and Jami J. Lockhart -- The prehistoric funerary archaeology of the Niah Caves, Sarawak (Malaysian Borneo) / Graeme Barker and Lindsay Lloyd-Smith -- Recognizing ritual in the dark : Nakovana Cave and the end of the Adriatic Iron Age / Timothy Kaiser and Stašo Forenbaher -- Sacred spaces, sacred species : zooarchaeological perspectives on ritual uses of caves / Joanna E.P. Appleby and Preston T. Miracle -- Ritual cave use in the Bahamas / Robert S. Carr, William C. Schaffer, Jeff B. Ransom, and Michael P. Pateman -- Caves in Ireland : archaeology, myth, and folklore / Patrick McCafferty -- Caves in black and white : the case of Zimbabwe / Terence Ranger -- Where the wild things are : an exploration of sacrality, danger, and violence in confined spaces / Sandra Pannell and Sue O'Connor -- Ritual uses of caves in West Malaysia / Joseph J. Hobbs -- A quantitative literature survey regarding the uses and perceptions of caves among nine indigenous Andean societies / Nathan Craig -- Caves and related sites in the Great Plains of North America / Donald J. Blakeslee -- Civilizing the cave man : diachronic and cross-cultural perspectives on cave ritual / Andrea Stone -- Caves and spatial constraint : the prehistoric implications / Ezra B.W. Zubrow -- Why dark zones are sacred : turning to behavioral and cognitive science for answers / Daniel R. Montello and Holley Moyes.
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