In this episode, Matt has the opportunity to speak with Dr. Irving Finkel, curator in the Department of the Middle East at the British Museum, and author of The First Ghosts. Dr. Finkel was kind enough to discuss ghost/demon beliefs in ancient Mesopotamia and how those beliefs reflect a lineage of such beliefs that continues through to the present day.
Irving Leonard Finkel (born 1951) is a British philologist and Assyriologist. He is currently the Assistant Keeper of Ancient Mesopotamian script, languages and cultures in the Department of the Middle East in the British Museum, where he specialises in cuneiform inscriptions on tablets of clay from ancient Mesopotamia
He is known for the discovery of tablet with Great Flood narrative suggesting a Coracle-shaped ark, his work with reconstruction of the Royal Game of Ur, and founded the Great Diary Project.
The First Ghosts: Most Ancient of Legacies
Irving Finkel has embarked upon an ancient ghost hunt, scouring these tablets to unlock the secrets of the Sumerians, Babylonians and Assyrians to breathe new life into the first ghost stories ever written. In The First Ghosts, he uncovers an extraordinarily rich seam of ancient spirit wisdom which has remained hidden for nearly 4000 years, covering practical details of how to live with ghosts, how to get rid of them and bring them back, and how to avoid becoming one, as well as exploring more philosophical questions: what are ghosts, why does the idea of them remain so powerful despite the lack of concrete evidence, and what do they tell us about being human?
David Hufford on Core Experiences
Dia De Los Muertos/Day of the Dead
This episode was written by Matthew Armstrong with music by Matthew Armstrong and production assistance from Kaylia Metcalfe.
There is no transcript for this episode.
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