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Laughing Gods, Weeping Virgins : Laughter in the History of Religion - Ingvild Saelid Gilhus

Laughing Gods, Weeping Virgins

Laughter in the History of Religion

Hardcover

Published: 4th September 1997
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Laughing Gods, Weeping Virgins analyses how laughter has been used as a symbol in myths, rituals and festivals of Western religions, and has thus been inscribed in religious discourse. The Mesopotamian Anu, the Israelite Jahweh, the Greek Dionysos, the Gnostic Christ and the late modern Jesus were all laughing gods. Through their laughter, gods prove both their superiority and their proximity to humans.
In this comprehensive study, Professor Gilhus examines the relationship between corporeal human laughter and spiritual divine laughter from cussical antiquity, to the Christian West and the modern era. She combines the study of the history of religion with social-scientific approaches, to provide an original and pertinent exploration of a universal human phenomenon, and its significance for the development of religions.

..." accessible ... Many insights are to be found in the chapters dealing with the specific cultural and historical contexts of laughter ...." -"Religious Studies Review

Acknowledgements
Introduction
Laughter, The Body and Two Fields of Meaning
Theories of Laughter History of Religions
Three Cultural Contexts of Religious Laughter
Ancient Near East
Laughter of Derision and Laughter of Regeneration
Laughter and Trickery Creation, Change and Control Gods and Human Beings
Jahweh and the Battle against Erotic
Laughter Divine Laughter: Its Channels and Consequences
Greece
When Laughter Touches the Unthought, Cunning Gods/Immortal Gods
Laughing Women Between Comedy and Tragedy
Chaotic Laughter
Rome
Critic of Laughter and Critical Laughter
'All this Business of Laughter-Raising is Trivial'
Critical Laughter On Tour with the God Animals and Mysteries
The Divine Man and the Mocking of Christianity Farewell to Laughter
Early Christianity
Laughter Between Body and Spirit Church Fathers and Desert Fathers
Weeping Virgins Did Anyone Laugh?
The Ludicrous Jahweh and the Laughing Christ
Gnostic Mythology Spiritual Laughter
Medieval Christianity
Carnival, Corpus Christi and Bodily
Laughter The Feast of Fools Deforming the Lord's Supper and Elevating the Ass Carnival in Religion Corpus Christi Embodied
Laughter From Body to Mind
Modernity and the Remytologization of Laughter: Churchly Boredom and Therapeutic
Laughter Bakhtin and Utopian
Laughter Postmodern Mythology Christ as Clown
The Laughing Christian Jokes of Criticism and Doubt Rolling in the Aisles
Religion of Jokes
Flirtation with the East Buddhism Comes Laughing
The Joking Guru
A Key Symbol Absolute Self/Relative World
Conclusion
Notes
Bibliography
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780415161978
ISBN-10: 0415161975
Audience: Tertiary; University or College
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 184
Published: 4th September 1997
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 21.59 x 13.97  x 1.42
Weight (kg): 0.38
Edition Number: 1