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Here is a list of some of the most influential and useful material on the Goddess.

The Garden of Their Dreams: A History of Cultures and Migrants from the Great Desert

by Brian Griffith

Hardcover (May 2001)

Zed Books; ISBN: 1856497992

This magnificent history of the desert relates the human consequences of its remorseless spread. As a result of the past several thousand years, the Great Desert now stretches in almost unbroken continuity from Mauritania's Atlantic seaboard through the Middle East and Central Asia to the Great Wall of China. The author seeks to understand how the great civilizations in the original "green lands" of North Africa, Ancient Egypt, the Middle East, South Asia, and China responded and changed under the pressure of invaders fleeing growing environmental degradation in the surrounding deserts. In fascinating detail, Brian Griffith's cultural history of the deserts of Africa and Asia shows how the expanding wasteland fundamentally reshaped people's images of nature, women, politics, and religion.

Noah's Flood: The New Scientific Discoveries About the Event That Changed History

by William Ryan, Walter C. Pitman, William Haxby (Illustrator)

Hardcover - 319 pages (January 1999)

Simon & Schuster; ISBN: 0684810522

The tale of a massive, devastating flood appears not only in the Bible but also in other ancient writings, often in similar terms, suggesting that it records a real and singularly memorable event. Ryan and Pitman, who are senior scientists at Columbia University's Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, think the event might have been a huge and prolonged cascade of water from the Mediterranean that broke through a natural dam in the Bosporus Strait and plunged into what was then a freshwater lake and is now the Black Sea. They present both geologic and archaeological evidence for the flood, dating it at about 5600 B.C. "The Bosporus flume roared and surged at full spate for at least three hundred days," they write. The cascade inundated 60,000 square miles of land, forcing the people living in the region to disperse. The book explores the question of who those people were and where they went; it also examines the tradition of oral storytelling that could have passed the flood story from generation to generation.

Inanna, Lady of Largest Heart: Poems of the Sumerian High Priestess Enheduanna

by Enheduanna, Betty De Shong Meador, Judy Grahn

Hardcover - 256 pages (February 2001)

Univ. of Texas; ISBN: 0292752415


The earliest known author of written literature was a woman named Enheduanna, who lived in ancient Mesopotamia around 2300 BCE. High Priestess to the moon god Nanna, Enheduanna came to venerate the goddess Inanna above all gods in the Sumerian pantheon. The hymns she wrote to Inanna constitute the earliest written portrayal of an ancient goddess. In their celebration of Enheduanna's relationship with Inanna, they also represent the first existing account of an individual's consciousness of her inner life.

This book provides the complete texts of Enheduanna's hymns to Inanna, skillfully and beautifully rendered by Betty De Shong Meador, who also discusses how the poems reflect Enheduanna's own spiritual and psychological liberation from being an obedient daughter in the shadow of her ruler father. Meador frames the poems with background information on the religious and cultural systems of ancient Mesopotamia and the known facts of Enheduanna's life. With this information, she explores the role of Inanna as the archetypal feminine, the first goddess who encompasses both the celestial and the earthly and shows forth the full scope of women's potential.

The Living Goddess

by Marija Gimbutas, edited by Miriam Robbins Dexter(1999)

Univ. of California Press

The quintessence of decades of research. . . . It excellently illustrates the various manifestations of the Goddess in the Minoan world and in ancient Greece, among the Etruscans and the Basques, in Celtic, Germanic, and Baltic religion. . . . For sure, the ideas of Marija Gimbutas about the 'Old European' civilization are controversial, but they are built on strong arguments and valid bases, which make it indispensable for her dissident colleagues to take heed of her writings.

Goddesses and Gods of Old Europe

by Marija Gimbutas(1974)

Thames & Hudson

Amazing art and sculptures from neolithic Europe. Worthy of Henry Moore. I would love to know where I could get replicas of the sorrowful god / goddess sculptures. Fascinating discoveries about the origins of the ancient greek religion. A must for anyone interested in European mythology.

Sacred Pleasure

by Riane Eisler(1995)

Harper and Rowe

In the spirit of her provocative, bestselling book The Chalice and the Blade, Eisler passionately envisions a future when women and men faces each other as equal partners and sex and spirituality are once again entwined. "This is Eisler's most stunning, far-raching, and practical gift--both to readers and to a world that must change or perish."--Gloria Steinem.

The Body of the Goddess

by Rachel Pollack(1998)

Element Publisher

"Wow. What a book. It's totally changed my view of human history (and, more to the point, herstory) and brought fresh insights about the Goddess. The dawn of civilization and religion, the matrifocal civilization of Catal Huyuk and Crete, the Gallae, and the Eleusinian Mysteries are all covered, with a spin on such things as landscape, the labrys, and the Venus of Willendorf that I've never seen elsewhere"

Dancing with the Goddess: Archetype, Poetry and Empowerment

by Annis Pratt(1994)

Indiana Univ. Press

Illustrated Anthology

Return of the Great Goddess

by Burleigh Mutén (Editor)

Paperback - 192 pages Reprint edition (August 1997),

80 illustrations, 58 in color.

Stewart, Tabori and Chang; ASIN: 1556706081

"Offering a diverse array of images and words, from prehistory to present day, the mission of this genuinely inspired volume is to remind women of their "spiritual heritage, innate wisdom, the integrity of the female body, and its rites of passage." Prehistoric artifacts are juxtaposed with modern art, ancient verse with contemporary poetry. Painting, sculpture, photography, film, and performance art portray the goddess in all her roles: creator and destroyer of life, fertility figure, and ruler of love and wisdom....this multicultural celebration of the myriad expressions of womanhood reflects the ongoing influence and presence of goddesses." (Amazon Art and Architecture Editor's Recommended Book, 10/01/97)

 

Goddess Dictionaries

Goddesses in World Mythology

by Martha Ann, Dorothy Myers Imel

Paperback - 645 pages Reprint edition (August 1995), a few b&w illustrations

Oxford University Press; ASIN: 019509199X

"Covering 30,000 years of goddess worship, and offering unprecedented access to information on more than 11,000 goddesses, nymphs, demons, and deified women, this fascinating book explores hundreds of cultures the world over that have worshipped female divinities." (Amazon Synopsis)

 

The New Book of Goddesses & Heroines

by Patricia Monaghan

Paperback - 384 pages 3rd edition (November 1997), some b&w illustrations

Llewellyn Publications; ASIN: 1567184650

1500 "Goddesses from every continent and culture, and representing every imaginable archetype from warrior to mother to lover. And even this dictionary doesn't exhaust the richness of the mythic vocabulary of the feminine. Throughout the ages, people have found the image of the goddess comforting, inspiring, awesome, alluring. She is inexhaustible as well, a fountain of female imagery." (Patricia Monaghan)

 

General Introduction

The Once and Future Goddess : A Symbol for Our Times

by Elinor W. Gadon

Paperback - 432 pages (November 1989),

200 black-and-white photos; 50 color photos

HarperCollins Publishers; ASIN: 0062503545

"Gadon provides a richly illustrated testament to the reemergence of the goddess in art and in the lives of contemporary women and men. " (Amazon Synopsis)

 

The Civilization of the Goddess : The World of Old Europe

by Marija Gimbutas

THIS TITLE IS CURRENTLY NOT AVAILABLE. The publisher is out of stock.

Paperback Reprint edition (January 1994), fully illustrated

Harpercollins (P); ASIN: 0062508040

This beautifully organized, lavishly illustrated, scholarly, lively masterpiece is the last major work of the late, great Marija Gimbutas. UCLA professor of Anthropology and Archaeology, Gimbutas is the most widely respected authority on ancient goddess-centered cultures. She is also a creative pioneer, bringing data and artifacts into a holistic vision of the widespread goddess-worshipping civilization of Neolithic Europe and the Aegean. Everything is thoroughly discussed and illustrated: maps, tools of daily life, dwellings, village plans, goddess images and sculptures, pottery, symbolic motifs, and so on. The Civilization of the Goddess is an indispensable compendium on early Goddess-centered cultures. (ML)

 

The Language of the Goddess

by Marija Gimbutas

Forward by Joseph Campbell

Paperback - 416 pages Reprint edition (May 1995), fully illustrated

Harper San Francisco; ASIN: 0062512439

In this richly illustrated volume, the noted archaeologist and prehistorian Marija Gimbutas brings prepatriarchal civilization to life. A pioneer in archaeomythology--the interdisciplinary field based on archaeology, comparative mythology, and folklore--Gimbutas unequivocally establishes the existence of a goddess religion in Neolithic Europe with its roots in the Paleolithic. Through the interpretation of images and symbols, she reveals these matriarchal cultures, decoding the symbolic language that has remained embedded in our civilization. Illustrated with nearly 2,000 symbolic artifacts--sculptures, figurines, temple models, frescoes, vases, sacrificial containers--the book establishes the Goddess as the most persistent feature in the archaeological record of the ancient world. A symbol of the unity of all life in nature, her power was in water and stone, in cave and tomb, in animals and birds, in hills, trees, and flowers. Her main functions were life-giving, death-wielding, and regenerative. Gimbutas's magnum opus takes the existence of goddess-worshiping, earth-centered, egalitarian, and nonviolent cultures out of the realm of speculation into that of documented fact. Foreword by Joseph Campbell. 526 illustrations.

 

World of the Goddess

by Marija Gimbutas

VHS Tape Vhs Video edition (September 1995)

MYSTIC FIRE VIDEO; ASIN: 630331256X Running Time: 103m/COLOR

 

Age of the Great Goddess

by Marija Gimbutas

Cassettes Edition

Audio Cassette

Published by Sounds True

Publication date: October 1994 ISBN: 1564551369

 

From the Realm of the Ancestors : An Anthology in Honor of Marija Gimbutas

by Joan Marler (Editor)

Paperback - 530 pages (March 1997)

Knowledge, Ideas & Trends, Inc.; ASIN: 1879198258

Thoughtful essays from a wide variety of scholars and researchers who have been influenced by the work of the late Marija Gimbutas. Very up-to-date, this book addresses many of the most pressing issues in female spirituality today.

 

Achitecture of the Goddess

Habitations of the Great Goddess

by Cristina Biaggi, Ph.D.

Hardcover, 201 pages, fully illustrated with approximately 250 b&w and 69 color illustrations

Published by Knowledge, Ideas, & Trends

Publication date: October 1994

ISBN: 1879198185

This important study of the architecture of the Goddess corrects common misconceptions and distortions advanced by other scholars, while building a powerfully convincing view of the world of the Neolithic Goddess. Combining impeccable original scholarship with a personal journey, Biaggi presents a detailed, sensitive, accurate, and loving portrait of tombs, temples, dwellings, and sculpture inspired by the Great Goddess from Malta to the
Shetland Islands. (ML)

 

Animals of the Goddess

Lady of the Beasts : Ancient Images of The Goddess and Her Sacred Animals

by Buffie Johnson

Paperback - 386 pages (October 1994), over 330 illustrations in b&w and color

Inner Traditions International; ASIN: 089281523X

Meticulously researched, beautifully illustrated study of the relationship between the Goddess and her sacred animals in ancient cultures. Includes discussions and lavish illustrations of the bird, lion, dog, serpent, butterfly, ewe and ram, spider, deer, fish, pig, cow and bull, scorpion, and bear. An acclaimed artist, Buffie Johnson began researching this book in the early 1940s, and as a result it is full of fresh information, inspiring and relevant on many levels: artistic, symbolic, mythological, ecological, shamanistic, psychological. (ML)

 

The Bawdy Goddess

The Metamorphosis of Baubo : Myths of Woman's Sexual Energy

by Winifred Milius Lubell, Marija Gimbutas

Hardcover - 244 pages 1 Ed edition (May 1994), illustrated

Vanderbiult University Press; ASIN: 0826512518

"Recounts the story of a little known but pivotal mythological character, known in Greek as Baubo, from primitive African and European carvings and cave paintings through classical art and literature and the facades of medieval Christian churches to contemporary myth making. Her characteristic bawdy jokes and gestures represent a female energy and power that have been suppressed or demonized by male-centered society." (Annotation copyright Book News, Inc. Portland, Or., 09/01/94)

 

The Dark Goddess

Black Madonnas : Feminism, Religion & Politics in Italy

by Lucia Chavola Birmbaum

Paperback-296 pages

Black Madonnas is a prize-winning, deeply researched, historical study demonstrating ancient goddess origins of Black Madonnas, subversive peasant customs and rituals surrounding images of Black Madonnas, and their contemporary transformative cultural and political implications.

"In the 1993 edition, I considered Black Madonnas a metaphor for a memory of the time when the earth was believed to be the body of woman and all creatures were equal, a memory transmitted in vernacular traditions of earth-bonded cultures, historically expressed in cultural and political resistance, and glimpsed today in movements aiming for transformation. Since then my understanding of Black Madonnas has been deepened by geneticists finding that the origin of modern humans is Africa, that primordial migrations from Africa carried a belief in a sacred dark woman to all continents. Black Madonnas may be considered a metaphor for healing millennial divisions of gender and race in concerted world movements for justice."

Dancing in the Flames: The Dark Goddess in the Transformation of Consciousness

by Marion Woodman, Elinor Dickson, Marion Goodman

Paperback -256 pages Reprint Edition, 21 illustrations

Published by Shambhala Publications

Publication date: May 1997

ISBN: 1570623139

"Earthy and immensely powerful, the Black Goddess has been a key force in world history, manifested in images as diverse as the Indian goddess Kali and the Black Madonnas of medieval Europe. But images of her have been conspicuously missing from the Western world for centuries--until now. Here, the authors explain the psychological significance of the divine feminine in the lives of modern women and men." (Amazon Synopsis)

 

Classic

When God Was a Woman

by Merlin Stone

Paperback - 265 pages (May 1978), illustrated

Harcourt Brace Jovanovich Publishers; ASIN: 015696158X

"Here, archaeologically documented, is the story of the religion of the Goddess. Known by many names, she reigned supreme in the Near and Middle East. How did the change in women's roles come about? By documenting the wholesale rewriting of myth and religious dogmas, Stone details an ancient conspiracy that laid the foundation for one of culture's
greatest shams--the legend of Adam and fallen Eve." (Amazon Synopsis)

 

Great Mother: an Analysis of the Archetype

by Erich Neumann

Ralph Manheim, Translator

Paperback Reprint/2nd edition (February 1991),

well illustrated with b&w plates and drawings

Princeton University Press; ASIN: 0691017808

Fascinating and profound, this study of the archetype of the feminine principle from a Jungian perspective is a classic. One of his most useful contributions is Neumann's Schema, which distinguishes between the Elemental Goddess and the developed goddesses, and between the physically transformative mother goddesses (positive and negative) and the spiritually transformative goddesses (also positive and negative). See also Neumann's The Origins and History of Consciousness. (ML)