Please join us for our monthly meeting via Zoom on Thursday, January 14th at 7:30pm featuring Dr. Edward Banning, Anthropology, University of Toronto and his talk titled: “Gobekli Tepe: First Temples or Early House Society?”.
Dr. Banning will discuss various interpretations of the meaning of this famous, enigmatic 10,000 year old Turkish site that some have argued are the world’s first temples.
Abstract: Excavations by the late Prof. Klaus Schmidt and his successors of the German team at Göbekli Tepe, in the Urfa district of southern Turkey, have captured the popular imagination with the site’s huge pillars, mysterious art, 10,000-year-old date, and alleged lack of residential occupation. Schmidt’s hypothesis that the site was a hunter-gatherer pilgrimage site with the world’s first temples attracted a huge following and considerable embellishment, including tenuous claims for connections with the Giza pyramids, comet impacts and even extraterrestrials. Ted Banning will summarize the German team’s interpretation of the site, including some of their more recent finds, and offer an alternative interpretation that he thinks is just as compelling — that the impressive buildings with their huge stone pillars are large houses of a “House Society,” similar in some ways to the cedar-plank houses and totem poles of Canada’s west coast.
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