Of God and Gods
Egypt, Israel, and the Rise of Monotheism
By (author) Jan Assmann
Of God and Gods by Jan Assmann
Book DescriptionFor thousands of years, our world has been shaped by biblical monotheism. But its hallmark - a distinction between one true God and many false gods - was once a new and radical idea. "Of God and Gods" explores the revolutionary newness of biblical theology against a background of the polytheism that was once so commonplace.Jan Assmann, one of the most distinguished scholars of ancient Egypt working today, traces the concept of a true religion back to its earliest beginnings in Egypt and describes how this new idea took shape in the context of the older polytheistic world that it rejected. He offers readers a deepened understanding of Egyptian polytheism and elaborates on his concept of the "Mosaic distinction," which conceives an exclusive and emphatic Truth that sets religion apart from beliefs shunned as superstition, paganism, or heresy.Without a theory of polytheism, Assmann contends, any adequate understanding of monotheism is impossible. This work will be of great interest to anyone seeking to understand the relationship between God and gods.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780299225544
(229mm x 152mm x 13mm)
Imprint: University of Wisconsin Press
Publisher: University of Wisconsin Press
Publish Date: 15-Jul-2008
Country of Publication: United States
Books By Author Jan Assmann
Death and Salvation in Ancient Egypt, Paperback (September 2014)
Drawing on the unfamiliar genre of the death liturgy, he arrives at a remarkably comprehensive view of the religion of death in ancient Egypt.
Religio Duplex: How the Enlightenment Reinvented Egyptian Religion, Hardback (February 2014)
In this important new book, the distinguished Egyptologist Jan Assmann provides a masterful overview of a crucial theme in the religious history of the West - that of 'religio duplex', or dual religion. He begins by returning to the theology of the Ancient Egyptians, who set out to present their culture as divided between the popular and the elite.
Price of Monotheism, Paperback (October 2009)
Explores the notions of primary versus secondary religions, of 'counter-religions', and of book religions versus cultic religions. This title deals with the entry of ethics into religion's very core. It presents a lesson in the fluidity of cultural identity and beliefs.
Religion and Cultural Memory, Paperback (November 2005)» View all books by Jan Assmann
Through a commanding view extending over five thousand years, Jan Assmann explores the connections between religion, culture, and memory, in ten brilliant essays.
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Author Biography - Jan Assmann
Jan Assmann is professor emeritus of Egyptology at the University of Heidelberg. He is also Honorary Professor of Cultural Theory at Konstanz University and has been a visiting professor at the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales in Paris, Yale University, the University of Chicago, and the Hebrew University, Jerusalem. A prize-winning scholar, he has published extensively on religious history and ancient Egypt.
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