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Heaven, Heroes and Happiness: the Indo-European Roots of Western Ideology
Heaven, Heroes and Happiness explores Western culture and its pervasive ideology while tracing its roots back to an ancient Proto-Indo-European homeland. This book explores ancient myth, the evidence of language history, and the archaeological record in an endeavor to show that the origin of Western civilization lies much deeper than had been anticipated. Contents: Pattern ...more
Paperback, 440 pages
Published March 21st 1995 by Upa
(first published 1995)
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Dec 17, 2009 Manybooks rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: anyone interested in Indo-European culture or languistics
Heaven, Heroes and Happiness is truly one of the best beginner level books on Indo-European culture/society I have encountered, have read to date (both informative and engaging, written in a readable, delightfully unacademic style). Highly recommended for both students and those with only a casual interest in the subject (case in point, I am no expert, and have never taken any official courses in Indo-European culture and linguistics, and had no trouble whatsoever understanding and appreciating ...more
I had the extreme good fortune of working with Shan on this book. I was his assistant grad student and was allowed to help him proof, index and do other work for him. He was an extraordinary, humble man with more reach and charisma than he ever gave himself credit for. He loved to learn and to help others learn. He never taught...he guided. Shan was also well traveled, well educated and a generally good man who only accepted the best from himself. With Heaven, Heroes and Happiness, he achieved t ...more
Amazing amazing book about the roots of Western culture, mythology and how they very likely could be tied to Indian subcontinent culture, the Indo-European "aryan" culture that spans from the tip of Sri Lanka, to the shores of Finland. Amazing, thick, and detailed book that will utterly alter your sense of West vs. East.
I honestly wasn't impressed by this book. It wasn't bad, just not good. Better books on the Indo-European myths would be Death, War and Sacrifice by Bruce Lincoln and M. L. West's Indo-European Poetry and Myth. For a look at the three functions I would recommend The New Comparative Mythology by C. Scott Littleton.