The Oxford Handbook of Prehistoric Figurines

ISBN : 9780199675616

Timothy Insoll
976 Pages
171 x 246 mm
Pub date
Feb 2017
Oxford Handbooks
Send mail

Figurines dating from prehistory have been found across the world but have never before been considered globally. The Oxford Handbook of Prehistoric Figurines is the first book to offer a comparative survey of this kind, bringing together approaches from across the landscape of contemporary research into a definitive resource in the field. The volume is comprehensive, authoritative, and accessible, with dedicated and fully illustrated chapters covering figurines from the Americas, Europe, Africa, Asia, and Australasia and the Pacific laid out by geographical location and written by the foremost scholars in figurine studies; wherever prehistoric figurines are found they have been expertly described and examined in relation to their subject matter, form, function, context, chronology, meaning, and interpretation. Specific themes that are discussed by contributors include, for example, theories of figurine interpretation, meaning in processes and contexts of figurine production, use, destruction and disposal, and the cognitive and social implications of representation. Chronologically, the coverage ranges from the Middle Palaeolithic through to areas and periods where an absence of historical sources renders figurines 'prehistoric' even though they might have been produced in the mid-2nd millennium AD, as in parts of sub-Saharan Africa. The result is a synthesis of invaluable insights into past thinking on the human body, gender, identity, and how the figurines might have been used, either practically, ritually, or even playfully.


Part 1. Introduction
1 Miniature Possibilities: An Introduction to the Varied Dimensions of Figurine Research
2 Lynn Meskell: The Archaeology of Figurines and the Human Body in Prehistory
3 Richard G. Lesure: Comparative Perspectives in the Interpretation of Prehistoric Figurines

Part 2. Africa
4 Alice Stevenson: Predynastic Egyptian Figurines
5 Gunnar Haaland and Randi Haaland: Prehistoric Figurines in Sudan
6 Barbara E. Barich: The Sahara
7 Alex Schoeman: Southern Africa
8 Timothy Insoll: West Africa
9 Pierre de Maret: Equatorial Africa

Part 3. The Americas
10 Andrzej Antczak and Magdalena Antczak: Caribbean
11 Erin L. Sears: Mesoamerica - Maya
12 Christopher A. Pool: Mesoamerica - Olmec
13 Jeffrey P. Blomster: Mesoamerica - Highland Formative (Early to Middle Formative) Figurines
14 Lisa Overholtzer: Aztec Figurines
15 Polly Schaafsma: North America - Southwest
16 Roy L. Carlson: Figurines and Figural Art of the Northwest Coast
17 William W. Fitzhugh and Bernadette Driscoll Engelstad: Inuguat: Prehistoric Human Figurines in the North American Arctic
18 George F. Lau: South America - Andes
19 Cristiana Barreto: Figurine Traditions from the Amazon

Part 4. Asia
20 Ellen Belcher and Karina Croucher: Anatolia
21 Sascha Priewe: Prehistoric Figurines in China: The Deep History of Figurative Imagery in China
22 Sharri R. Clark and J. Mark Kenoyer: South Asia - Indus Civilization
23 Koji Mizoguchi: Anthropomorphic Clay Figurines of the Jomon Period of Japan
24 Ian Kuijt: Clay Ideas: Levantine Neolithic Figurine Trajectories and Intellectual Threads
25 Stuart Campbell and Aurelie Daems: Figurines in Prehistoric Mesopotamia
26 Aurelie Daems: From a Bird's Eye View: Prehistoric Human Figurines from Iran

Part 5. Australasia and the Pacific
27 Catherine Orliac and Michel Orliac: Wooden Figurines of Easter Island

Part 6. Europe
28 Colin Renfrew: Cycladic Figurines
29 Christine Morris: Minoan and Mycenaean Figurines
30 Rebecca Farbstein: Palaeolithic Central and Eastern Europe
31 Eszter Banffy: Neolithic Eastern and Central Europe
32 Caroline Malone and Simon Stoddart: Figurines of Malta
33 Daisy Knox: Mediterranean - Cyprus
34 Robin Skeates: Prehistoric Figurines in Italy
35 Isabelle Vella Gregory: Mediterranean - Sardinia
36 Doug Bailey: Southeast European Neolithic Figurines: Beyond Context, Interpretation, and Meaning
37 Paul Pettitt: Palaeolithic Western and North Central Europe
38 Chris Scarre: Neolithic Figurines of Western Europe

About the author: 

Timothy Insoll is a Professor of African and Islamic Archaeology at the University of Manchester. Educated at the Universities of Sheffield and Cambridge, he was initially awarded a Research Fellowship at St John's College, Cambridge before being appointed lecturer at the University of Manchester in 1998, where he was awarded a personal chair in 2005. He is the author or editor of 16 books, three special journal issues, and numerous articles and reviews on a wide range of research topics across the discipline of archaeology and has completed fieldwork in Mali, Ghana, western India, Bahrain, Eritrea, Ethiopia, and Uganda.

The price listed on this page is the recommended retail price for Japan. When a discount is applied, the discounted price is indicated as “Discount price”. Prices are subject to change without notice.