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The historical archaeology of mortuary behavior: Coffin hardware from Uxbridge, Massachusetts

Bell, Edward

Historical Archaeology, 1990, Vol.24(3), pp.54-78 [Periódico revisado por pares]

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  • Título:
    The historical archaeology of mortuary behavior: Coffin hardware from Uxbridge, Massachusetts
  • Autor: Bell, Edward
  • Assuntos: History & Archaeology
  • É parte de: Historical Archaeology, 1990, Vol.24(3), pp.54-78
  • Descrição: A popular cultural trend developed in late 18th- and 19th-century American mortuary practices. Called “the beautification of death,” this Romantic movement idealized death and heaven through ideological, behavioral, and material transformations. The appearance of mass-produced Coffin hardware in archaeological contexts throughout North America may be linked with this popular movement. Archaeological recovery of mass-produced coffin hardware and glass view plates, from cemeteries spanning a range of socioeconomic contexts, demonstrates that certain aspects of popular culture were so pervasive as to find expression, albeit dilute, at even the lowest level of society. The presence of decorated coffins at the Uxbridge Almshouse Burial Ground, as at other cemeteries associated with socioeconomically marginal groups, also suggests that archaeological interpretations that unquestioningly equate socioeconomic status directly to coffin embellishment need to be reviewed in light of socio-historical developments relating to mass consumption and popular culture in industrializing America.
  • Idioma: Inglês

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