Walking into the Void : A Historical Sociology and Political Anthropology of Walking
218 p. 23 cm.
Employs the genealogical method and impact helping those different from oneself. The first part of this book explores the more the concept of liminality to theorise the links between walking, pilgrimage and rites of theoretical issues of helping others. The second part of this guidebook examines passage as liminal experiences, and offers a historical survey of the role played by walking action-based methods and the socio-political issues that inevitably arise for those who in settled and increasingly massified societies.
The book starts by discussing the significance of walking for the experience of being human, including a comparative study of the language and cultures of walking. It then reviews in detail, relying on archaeology, two turning points of human history: the emergence of cave art sanctuaries and a new cultural practice of long-distance 'pilgrimages', implying a descent into such caves, thus literally the 'void'; and the abandonment of walking culture through settlement at the end of the Ice Age, around the time when the visiting of cave sanctuaries also stopped. The rise of philosophy and Christianity is then presented as two returns to walking. The book closes by looking at the ambivalent relationship of contemporary modernity to walking, where its radical abandonment is combined with attempts at returns. The book ventures an unprecedented genealogy of walking culture, bringing together archaeological studies distant in both time and place, and having a special focus on the significance of the rise of representative art for human history. Our genealogy helped to identify settlement not as the glorious origin of civilisation, but rather as a source of an extremely problematic development. The findings of the book should be relevant for social scientists, as well as those interested in walking and its cultural and civilisational significance, or in the direction and meaning of human history.
Table of Contents
Preface Introduction Part I Walking into Sense 1 The Experience of Walking 2 The Language and Culture of Walking 3 The Dilemma of Representing the Void: Michel Foucault and Francis Yates Part II The Flourishing and Demise of Walking Culture 4 Chauvet: The Cave of Wonders, or Representation as Transgression 5 Pergouset: The Cave of Monsters, and its Aftermath 6 Natufian Settlement: Technology, Representation, Standing Reserve 7 Goebekli Tepe: Sanctuary as Trickster Bestiary, or the Revival of Transgression 8 Catalhoeyuk: The Culmination of Settlement 9 Tassili: Incubating Transformation, Or A Training Ground for The Magi Part III Returns to Walking 10 Walking in Philosophy and Religion 11 Walking in Mountains: The Vocation of Losing Oneself 12 Experiencing Walking Conclusion Bibliography Glossary Index