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Actualities: religion in urban context in Hatra

June 20, 2014

As I wrote in a modest contribution, religion in urban context became nowadays a very popular topic. Atomizing Roman religion, makes easier maybe to analyze more accurately the archaeology of  the sacred and the local networks too.

Reinterpretation of the notion of sacred landscape is also a popular topic.

In this context, the new book of Krzysztof Jakubiak, Sacral landscape in Hatra. Warsaw, 2014 is an interesting attempt to present the sacred (sacral?) landscape of one of the most researched city of the East. About the religious life of Hatra there are many recent studies (Dirven 2013, Kaizer 2006, 2009). This book  – under the name of sacral landscape – presents only the sacred architecture of the city. The same concept, as we found in the edited volume of Kaizer from 2013, where urban sacred landscape appears mainly as “architecture”.

It is very nice to see a synthesis about the sacral architecture of a city (especially from such dangerous areas as Iraq!), but sacred landscape would mean (after the definition of Cancik 1986, Rome as sacred landscape,” Visible Religion 4–5. 250–65) something much, much more than buildings.

However, we are so happy to see new books from a city from Iraq. Sacral-Landscape-in-Hatra-Jakubiak_large

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