Personal Experience and Materiality in Greek Religion  book cover
1st Edition

Personal Experience and Materiality in Greek Religion

  • Available for pre-order on March 24, 2023. Item will ship after April 14, 2023
ISBN 9781032357485
April 14, 2023 Forthcoming by Routledge
216 Pages 49 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

Employing frameworks of lived religion and materiality, this book provides the first full-length study of personal religious experience in the Greek Archaic and Classical periods.

Rask analyzes archaeological, epigraphic, and textual evidence to highlight the role of individuals as vital actors and makers of Greek religion. A range of perspectives, such as those of Archaic mariners and Late Classical weaving women, show that religion infused the daily lives of ancient Greeks. Chapters visit the many spaces where people engaged in religious activities, from household kitchens to international emporia, as well as shrines both large and small. The book also interrogates devotional activities such as making votives and engaging in lifelong relationships with divinities, arguing for the emotionally rich character of Greek lived religion. Not only do these considerations demonstrate underexplored ways for reconstructing aspects of Greek religion, but also allow us to rethink familiar subjects such as votive portraits and epiphany from new angles.

Personal Experience and Materiality in Greek Religion is of interest to students and scholars working on ancient Greek religion and archaeology, as well as anyone interested in daily life and lived experience in the ancient world.

Table of Contents

1. Introduction; 2. From the Hands of Votaries: Self-made Offerings and Personal Devotion; 3. ‘We placed our offerings side by side with his’: Personal History, Childhood, and Religious Materiality; 4. Experiencing Supernatural Presence: From Bodily Blessings to Ghostly Visitors; 5. Media of Presence: Keeping Gods and Humans Close; 6. Bringing It All Together: Religion and the Seafaring Life; Epilogue: Going Forward.

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K.A. Rask is assistant professor of Classics at The Ohio State University. She is a historian of religion whose research focuses on Greek religion and archaeology and Etruscan religion. She engages in archaeological fieldwork in both Greece and Italy.