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The Serpent and the Sacred Fire Fertility Images in Southwest Rock Art

by Dennis Slifer

  • ISBN: 9780890133477
  • ISBN10: 0890133476

The Serpent and the Sacred Fire Fertility Images in Southwest Rock Art

by Dennis Slifer

  • List Price: $16.95
  • Binding: Paperback
  • Publisher: Univ of New Mexico Pr
  • Publish date: 10/01/2000
  • ISBN: 9780890133477
  • ISBN10: 0890133476
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Description: The Southwest holds a treasure trove of prehistoric rock art, the fascinating images of petroglyphs and pictographs spanning thousands of years of Indian culture. Fertility has been identified as one of the most obvious and persistent themes in rock art, the record resplendent with symbols of birth, death, and procreation.

Three-time rock art author Dennis Slifer takes a wide and deep look at symbols of fertility and fecundity, meticulously documenting drawings made by prehistoric cultures and the historical tribes of today's greater Southwest. The book replicates scenes of human fertility and sexuality including copulation scenes, female figures giving birth, puberty rituals, and sacred marriage ceremonies. Other common rock art symbols include pregnant animals, phallic fluteplayers, serpents, and crook-necked staffs. Human reproduction, fertility and abundance, and spiritual renewal were aspects of life involving humans in a complex interweave.

Slifer compares the southwestern symbols with those fertility symbols found in rock art sites around the world, and demonstrates the universal significance of fertility to early cultures, and the archetype sense of the connectedness of the living world.

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