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  • Titill er á ensku In Search of askr Yggdrasill: A Phenomenological Approach to the Role of Trees in Old Nordic Religions
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  • Útdráttur er á ensku

    This thesis contains a study of the role of trees in Old Nordic religions during the Iron Age and Viking Age from a phenomenological and comparative perspective and includes three discussion chapters, each with its own main topic: the world-tree; trees as people and vice versa; and real living trees. It has been conducted in order to clarify certain issues regarding how ancient Scandinavians might have perceived the world and then in particular trees, metaphysical trees and real trees. In the discussion chapters, the thesis reflects upon narratives in the extant written source material which would have been part of the phenomenology of trees, in the light of the ever-growing bulk of archaeological material reflecting remnants of symbolic and ritualistic behaviour relating to trees. The project argues that we need to sidestep with our modern perception of the world if we wish to understand how trees might have been understood in a religious sense in the Old Nordic world. It argues also that we need to make a clear distinction between emic and etic terms, underlining the need to be aware of the implications of the terms that we use in each case. Building on recent anthropological ethnographies, it argues furthermore that we need to reconsider aspects of animism in Old Nordic religions with regard to trees, and that some trees appear to have been seen by the Iron-Age and Viking-Age Scandinavians as doorways to the world of death and intermediaries of knowledge.

  • 30.5.2018

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MA thesis.pdf3.66 MBOpinnHeildartextiPDFSkoða/Opna
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