The Expression of Emotions in Ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia


The volume The Expression of Emotions in Ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia offers an overview of the study of emotions in ancient texts, discusses the concept of emotions in Ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia, and shows how emotions are described in the ancient texts. In the section dedicated to Ancient Egypt, scholars discuss emotions such as fear, depression, anger, feelings of pain, envy, jealousy and greed, with evidence from different text genres, as well as emotions from the Late Ramesside Letters and royal inscriptions. In the section dedicated to Ancient Mesopotamia, scholars present a wide range of perspectives on Sumerian and Akkadian literary and archival texts that treat emotions in different periods.

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Shih-Wei Hsu, Ph.D. (2014), Free University of Berlin, is Associate Professor of History at Nankai University (P.R. China). She is an Egyptologist specialised in Egyptian language, rhetorical stylistics, development of royal inscriptions and kingship.

Jaume Llop Raduà, Ph.D. (2001), University of Barcelona, is Professor of Prehistory, Ancient History and Archaeology at the Complutense University of Madrid (Spain). He is an Assyriologist specialised in Late Bronze Age Assyria.
“The full Index of Subjects and Names at the end of the book show how rich this pioneering work is.”
- Marten Stol, in Bibliotheca Orientalis, LXXVIII N° 5-6, oktober-december 2021
Notes on Contributors

1 The Expression of Emotions in Ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia: An Introduction
Shih-Wei Hsu and Jaume Llop Raduà

Part 1 The Expression of Emotions in Ancient Egypt

2 History of Horror: A Diachronic Overview of Fear(s) in Ancient Egyptian Texts
Sven Eicke

3 “I Wish I Could Die”: Depression in Ancient Egypt
Shih-Wei Hsu

4 Royal Rage and Private Anger in Ancient Egypt
Ines Köhler

5 Everybody Hurts: Understanding and Visualizing Pain in Ancient Egypt
Tara Prakash

6 “Without You I Am an Orphan”: Exploring Emotion and Interpersonal Pragmatics in the Late Ramesside Letters
Kim Ridealgh

7 Indexes of Emotions in Pianchy’s Great Stela with Some Cultural Comparisons
Anthony Spalinger

8 “Do Not Cast an Eye on Another One’s Goods …!”: Aspects of Envy, Jealousy and Greed in Ancient Egypt
Alexandra Verbovsek

Part 2 The Expression of Emotions in Ancient Mesopotamia

9 Depression at the Royal Courts of Esarhaddon and Ashurbanipal
Greta Van Buylaere

10 Shaping Gender, Shaping Emotions: On the Mutual Construction of Gender Identities and Emotional Roles in Ancient Mesopotamia
Agnès Garcia-Ventura

11 Emotions and Their Expression in a Religious Historical Perspective in Ancient Mesopotamia
Margaret Jaques

12 Expressions of Joy and Happiness in Neo-Assyrian
Mikko Luukko

13 From Landscape to Ritual Performances: Emotions in Sumerian Literature
Anne-Caroline Rendu Loisel

14 Jealousy in Akkadian Love Literature: Zarpanītu in the Divine Love Lyrics
Rocío Da Riva

15 Visible Death and Audible Distress: The Personification of Death (Mūtu) and Associated Emotions as Inherent Conditions of Life in Akkadian Sources
Irene Sibbing-Plantholt

16 Gilgamesh and Emotional Excess: The King without Counsel in the SB Gilgamesh Epic
Karen Sonik

17 Pounding Hearts and Burning Livers: The “Sentimental Body” in Mesopotamian Medicine and Literature
Ulrike Steinert

18 Fear in Akkadian Texts: New Digital Perspectives on Lexical Semantics
Saana Svärd, Tero Alstola, Heidi Jauhiainen, Aleksi Sahala and Krister Lindén

Index of Subjects and Names
Index of Sources
Index of Words
All interested in the expression of emotions in Ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia, and anyone concerned with related texts, languages, literature, cultures and history.
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