The sensory world of Mesopotamia

Authored by: Augusta McMahon

The Routledge Handbook of Sensory Archaeology

Print publication date:  November  2019
Online publication date:  October  2019

Print ISBN: 9781138676299
eBook ISBN: 9781315560175
Adobe ISBN:

10.4324/9781315560175-23

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Abstract

Mesopotamian sensory experiences included consciously manipulated and formal sense-scapes that invoked ideas of power and social order. But informal and continually changing sense-scapes were also created by the messy input from everyday life, which reinforced notions of community and productivity. The past inhabitants of Mesopotamia embraced synaesthesia in conceptualising and using materials, in observing and walking through buildings and gardens, and in activities from discarding rubbish to practising religion. Archaeology, art and texts are important sources for our reconstruction of Mesopotamian sense-scapes and of the memories and ideas they created and invoked.

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