Our Sacred Signs How Jewish, Christian, and Muslim Art Draw from the Same Source

ISBN-10: 081334297X
ISBN-13: 9780813342979
Edition: 2005 (Revised)
Authors: Ori Soltes
List price: $29.95
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Description: The art of the three Abrahamic religions--Christianity Judaism, and Islam--has a tangled, interwoven history. Symbols cross back and forth among the three faiths, adapted to reflect that faith's specific spiritual needs. And much of this symbolic  More...

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Book details

List price: $29.95
Copyright year: 2005
Publisher: Basic Books
Publication date: 11/1/2005
Binding: Hardcover
Pages: 288
Size: 6.25" wide x 9.50" long x 1.00" tall
Weight: 1.188
Language: English

The art of the three Abrahamic religions--Christianity Judaism, and Islam--has a tangled, interwoven history. Symbols cross back and forth among the three faiths, adapted to reflect that faith's specific spiritual needs. And much of this symbolic language predates any of the Abrahamic faiths entirely. In Our Sacred Signs, Ori Soltes traces the inter-connectedness of religious symbols such as the Star of David, which isn't, it turns out, exclusive to Judaism at all. He shows that the various ways that Jesus is portrayed on the cross recall an artistic tradition that is in no way unique to Christianity. And he shows that religious architectural conventions as simple as the dome represent early "pagan" traditions. The narrative--essentially a series of overlapping stores--moves through the halls of museums and off to the holy sites of the three religions, tracing the millennia-long artistic trail that has endured even as the West moved toward secularization in the last three hundred years. Soltes shows us how art has long been used as an instrument to take us where words cannot follow. Our Sacred Signs is a breathtaking and revelatory journey through human history, its gods, and its art.

Introduction : symbols of faith : art as an instrument of religion
Symbols in ancient art
Monotheism and the development of the Abrahamic traditions
Christian symbols from catacomb to cathedral
Jewish and Muslim symbols in sacred and profane contexts
The survival of symbols in a secularizing western world
Symbols of faith in twentieth-century visual art

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