Krupp, E. C.
Title Skywatchers, Shamans & Kings Astronomy and the Archaeology of Power
Book Condition Near Fine in Near Fine dust jacket
Publisher New York Wiley 1996
0471048631 / 9780471048633
Seller ID 17764
DJ shows very light shelf wear. ; A bright, solid book, dustjacket in Mylar, unclipped. Text unmarked.; Wiley Popular Science; 9.44 X 7.26 X 1.19 inches; 364 pages; "An astronomer with a Jungian streak, Krupp (Echoes of the Ancient Sky), the director of the Griffith Observatory in L.A., synthesizes the study of the heavens with archeology in an intriguing attempt to understand the cultural power of shamans and kings in ancient civilizations. In the tradition of Frazer, Eliade and Campbell, the author seeks commonality in the use of sky myths by shamans from cultures as diverse as the Mayan, Egyptian, Tibetan, Mongolian, Chinese, Turkic, African and Inuit, as well as those of the indigenous peoples of the American plains, Northwest and Southwest. Carefully analyzing sacred petroglyphs, pictographs and statuary, he traces the evolution of culture from hunting bands to the establishment of complex civilizations. The journey includes study of the natural high places of the earth, which direct human awe heavenward toward the sky gods. Alternately, the chthonic depths of caves and grottoes are examined for insight into the traditions of nurturing mother goddesses and fertility cults. Throughout, reference to ancient awareness of the movement of the planets and constellations, especially in regard to the solstices and equinoxes, is highlighted. With an anecdotal style and with reference to myriad illustrations, Krupp enngagingly explores the historic derivation of political control descending from the skies, to rulers. The harmonics of order implicit in the structure of the cosmos, he forcefully contends, are endangered by contemporary reactionary, earthbound cultures, engendering conflicts that are expressed in rising social intolerance and religious fundamentalism. "