Cover image for How do we look? : the body, the divine, and the question of civilization
How do we look? : the body, the divine, and the question of civilization
Beard, Mary, 1955- author.
Personal Author:
Uniform Title:
First American edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Liveright Publishing Corporation, a division of W.W. Norton & Company, 2018.

Physical Description:
240 pages : color illustrations, portraits (chiefly color) ; 23 cm
From prehistoric Mexico to modern Istanbul, Mary Beard looks beyond the familiar canon of Western imagery to explore the history of art, religion, and humanity. Conceived as a gorgeously illustrated accompaniment to "How Do We Look" and "The Eye of Faith," the famed Civilisations shows on PBS, renowned classicist Mary Beard has created this elegant volume on how we have looked at art. Focusing in Part I on the Olmec heads of early Mesoamerica, the colossal statues of the pharaoh Amenhotep III, and the nudes of classical Greece, Beard explores the power, hierarchy, and gender politics of the art of the ancient world, and explains how it came to define the so-called civilized world. In Part II, Beard chronicles some of the most breathtaking religious imagery ever made--whether at Angkor Wat, Ravenna, Venice, or in the art of Jewish and Islamic calligraphers--to show how all religions, ancient and modern, have faced irreconcilable problems in trying to picture the divine. With this classic volume, Beard redefines the Western- and male-centric legacies of Ernst Gombrich and Kenneth Clark. Includes 92 illustrations.
Introduction: A history of looking -- Part 1: The body in question -- Prologue: Heads and bodies -- A singing statue -- Greek bodies -- The look of loss: from Greece to Rome -- The Emperor of China and the power of images -- Supersizing a pharaoh -- The Greek revolution -- The stain on the thigh -- The revolution's legacy -- The Olmec wrestler -- Part 2: The eye of faith -- Prologue: Sunrise at Angkor Wat -- Who's looking? "Cave art" at Ajanta -- Who or what was Jesus? -- Questions of vanity -- A living statue? -- The artfulness of Islam -- Bible stories -- The scars of battle -- Hindu images, Islamic idioms -- Faith in civilisation -- Afterword: Looking at civilisation.
Format :