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Original Essays | April 11, 2014

Paul Laudiero: IMG Shit Rough Draft



I was sitting in a British and Irish romantic drama class my last semester in college when the idea for Shit Rough Drafts hit me. I was working... Continue »
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How Ancient Europeans Saw the World: Vision, Patterns, and the Shaping of the Mind in Prehistoric Times

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How Ancient Europeans Saw the World: Vision, Patterns, and the Shaping of the Mind in Prehistoric Times Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

The peoples who inhabited Europe during the two millennia before the Roman conquests had established urban centers, large-scale production of goods such as pottery and iron tools, a money economy, and elaborate rituals and ceremonies. Yet as Peter Wells argues here, the visual world of these late prehistoric communities was profoundly different from those of ancient Rome's literate civilization and today's industrialized societies. Drawing on startling new research in neuroscience and cognitive psychology, Wells reconstructs how the peoples of pre-Roman Europe saw the world and their place in it. He sheds new light on how they communicated their thoughts, feelings, and visual perceptions through the everyday tools they shaped, the pottery and metal ornaments they decorated, and the arrangements of objects they made in their ritual places--and how these forms and patterns in turn shaped their experience.

How Ancient Europeans Saw the World offers a completely new approach to the study of Bronze Age and Iron Age Europe, and represents a major challenge to existing views about prehistoric cultures. The book demonstrates why we cannot interpret the structures that Europe's pre-Roman inhabitants built in the landscape, the ways they arranged their settlements and burial sites, or the complex patterning of their art on the basis of what these things look like to us. Rather, we must view these objects and visual patterns as they were meant to be seen by the ancient peoples who fashioned them.

Review:

"Wells ‘reads’ tools, vehicles, ornaments, textiles and buildings to reveal a neurobiological map of profound changes in ancient society." ---Nature

Synopsis:

The peoples who inhabited Europe during the two millennia before the Roman conquests had established urban centers, large-scale production of goods such as pottery and iron tools, a money economy, and elaborate rituals and ceremonies. Yet as Peter Wells argues here, the visual world of these late prehistoric communities was profoundly different from those of ancient Rome's literate civilization and today's industrialized societies. Drawing on startling new research in neuroscience and cognitive psychology, Wells reconstructs how the peoples of pre-Roman Europe saw the world and their place in it. He sheds new light on how they communicated their thoughts, feelings, and visual perceptions through the everyday tools they shaped, the pottery and metal ornaments they decorated, and the arrangements of objects they made in their ritual places--and how these forms and patterns in turn shaped their experience.

How Ancient Europeans Saw the World offers a completely new approach to the study of Bronze Age and Iron Age Europe, and represents a major challenge to existing views about prehistoric cultures. The book demonstrates why we cannot interpret the structures that Europe's pre-Roman inhabitants built in the landscape, the ways they arranged their settlements and burial sites, or the complex patterning of their art on the basis of what these things look like to us. Rather, we must view these objects and visual patterns as they were meant to be seen by the ancient peoples who fashioned them.

Synopsis:

"Peter Wells adopts an entirely new approach to the later centuries of European prehistory. He opens our eyes to the way in which Bronze Age and Iron Age people viewed their world, drawing on current work in material culture studies to present us with a dynamic picture of the visual life of late prehistory. This book will revolutionize the way we think about the Iron Age."--Anthony Harding, University of Exeter

"We think it modern to be trapped in an impersonal world by the convenience of mass-produced commodities, yearning for the individual crafts and communities that graced an earlier, more human era. In his new book on the visual experiences and perceptions of pre-Roman societies in central and western Europe, Peter Wells teaches us that this dilemma is not uniquely modern; it has happened before. In fact before the Roman Empire expanded into northwestern Europe the people of regions far beyond the empire had surrendered an economy of individualizing crafts to mass production, preparing themselves materially for their eventual military conquest. How Ancient Europeans Saw the World is an intriguing book that attempts to revisualize swords and brooches, tombs and public spaces, borrowing cues from marketing research and art history to reconstruct how things appeared to the people who made and used them. It deserves a wide readership"--David W. Anthony, author of The Horse, the Wheel, and

About the Author

Peter S. Wells is professor of anthropology at the University of Minnesota. His many books include "Barbarians to Angels: The Dark Ages Reconsidered" and "The Barbarians Speak: How the Conquered Peoples Shaped Roman Europe" (Princeton).

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations vii

Preface xi

Acknowledgments xvii

Part I: Theory and Method

Chapter 1: Of Monsters and Flowers 1

Chapter 2: Seeing and Shaping Objects 18

Chapter 3: The Visual Worlds of Early Europe 34

Chapter 4: Frame, Focus, Visualization 52

Part II: Material: Objects and Arrangements

Chapter 5: Pottery: The Visual Ecology of the Everyday 72

Chapter 6: Attraction and Enchantment: Fibulae 99

Chapter 7: Status and Violence: Swords and Scabbards 112

Chapter 8: Arranging Spaces: Objects in Graves 131

Chapter 9: Performances: Objects and Bodies in Motion 155

Chapter 10: New Media in the Late Iron

Product Details

ISBN:
9780691143385
Author:
Wells, Peter S.
Publisher:
Princeton University Press
Subject:
Archaeology
Subject:
Archaeology and Ancient History
Subject:
Anthropology
Subject:
World History-Ancient History
Subject:
Cognitive science
Subject:
Cognitive Scien
Subject:
ce
Copyright:
Publication Date:
20120831
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Language:
English
Illustrations:
40 halftones. 6 line illus. 3 maps.
Pages:
304
Dimensions:
9 x 6 in
Age Level:
Coins and Writing 176</p> <p> <strong>Part III: In

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Related Subjects

History and Social Science » Anthropology » General
History and Social Science » Anthropology » Physical
History and Social Science » Archaeology » General
History and Social Science » Law » General
History and Social Science » Western Civilization » Ancient History
History and Social Science » World History » Ancient History

How Ancient Europeans Saw the World: Vision, Patterns, and the Shaping of the Mind in Prehistoric Times New Hardcover
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$42.50 In Stock
Product details 304 pages Princeton University Press - English 9780691143385 Reviews:
"Review" by , "Wells ‘reads’ tools, vehicles, ornaments, textiles and buildings to reveal a neurobiological map of profound changes in ancient society." ---
"Synopsis" by , The peoples who inhabited Europe during the two millennia before the Roman conquests had established urban centers, large-scale production of goods such as pottery and iron tools, a money economy, and elaborate rituals and ceremonies. Yet as Peter Wells argues here, the visual world of these late prehistoric communities was profoundly different from those of ancient Rome's literate civilization and today's industrialized societies. Drawing on startling new research in neuroscience and cognitive psychology, Wells reconstructs how the peoples of pre-Roman Europe saw the world and their place in it. He sheds new light on how they communicated their thoughts, feelings, and visual perceptions through the everyday tools they shaped, the pottery and metal ornaments they decorated, and the arrangements of objects they made in their ritual places--and how these forms and patterns in turn shaped their experience.

How Ancient Europeans Saw the World offers a completely new approach to the study of Bronze Age and Iron Age Europe, and represents a major challenge to existing views about prehistoric cultures. The book demonstrates why we cannot interpret the structures that Europe's pre-Roman inhabitants built in the landscape, the ways they arranged their settlements and burial sites, or the complex patterning of their art on the basis of what these things look like to us. Rather, we must view these objects and visual patterns as they were meant to be seen by the ancient peoples who fashioned them.

"Synopsis" by , "Peter Wells adopts an entirely new approach to the later centuries of European prehistory. He opens our eyes to the way in which Bronze Age and Iron Age people viewed their world, drawing on current work in material culture studies to present us with a dynamic picture of the visual life of late prehistory. This book will revolutionize the way we think about the Iron Age."--Anthony Harding, University of Exeter

"We think it modern to be trapped in an impersonal world by the convenience of mass-produced commodities, yearning for the individual crafts and communities that graced an earlier, more human era. In his new book on the visual experiences and perceptions of pre-Roman societies in central and western Europe, Peter Wells teaches us that this dilemma is not uniquely modern; it has happened before. In fact before the Roman Empire expanded into northwestern Europe the people of regions far beyond the empire had surrendered an economy of individualizing crafts to mass production, preparing themselves materially for their eventual military conquest. How Ancient Europeans Saw the World is an intriguing book that attempts to revisualize swords and brooches, tombs and public spaces, borrowing cues from marketing research and art history to reconstruct how things appeared to the people who made and used them. It deserves a wide readership"--David W. Anthony, author of The Horse, the Wheel, and

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