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THE MNES - Dien yerude “Jan Assmann’s The Mind of Egypt is cultural history in the manner of ‘Walter Burkert. Assmann takes us into the interior world of ancient Egypt, a world that we have been accustomed to approach only from the outside. Moreover, he shows that, far from being ‘prehistoric) ancient Egypt had its own fully worked-out and sophisticated philosophy of history. This is a major contribution to the history of historical consciousness.” —HAYDEN WHITE, AUTHOR OF THE CONTENT OF THE FORM “The Mind of Egypt is a luminous book. With the astonishing erudition and conceptual innovation we have come to expect of him, Jan Assmann tra- verses 5,000 years of ancient Egyptian civilization, probing the meaning of its history by tracing the complex history of its meaning for the Egyptians themselves. In examining what they remembered of their past and how they constructed their collective memories, Assmann sheds new light on every major aspect of Egyptian culture, politics, and religion. The Egypt that emerges is no longer a hieroglyph but a civilization pulsating with life and significance. In a time of rampant historical skepticism, Assmann’s work breaks new methodological ground and renews our faith in the integrity and potential of the historian’s craft.” —YOSEF HAYIM YERUSHALMI, SALO WITMAYER BARON PROFESSOR OF JEWISH HISTORY, CULTURE AND SOCIETY, COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY $35.00 FROM ONE OF THE WORLD'S GREATEST EGYPTOLOGISTS, AN ORIGINAL AND BRILLIANT STUDY OF THE INNER LIFE OF ANCIENT EGYPT THE MIND OF EGYPT PRESENTS AN UNPRECE- dented account of the mainsprings of Egyptian civilization—the ideals, values, mentalities, be- lief systems, and aspirations that shaped the first territorial state in human history. Drawing on a range of literary, iconographic, and archae- ological sources, the renowned historian Jan Assmann reconstructs a world of unparalleled complexity, a culture that, long before others, possessed an extraordinary degree of awareness and self-reflection. Moving through successive periods of Egyptian civilization, from its beginnings in the fifth millennium B.c.k. until the rise of Christianity 4,500 years later, Assmann traces the crucial roles of the pharaohs, the priests, and the imperial bureaucracy. He explores the ideal relation of man to god and explains mon- umental architecture and ritual celebrations as, expressions of that ideal. Most strikingly, he focuses on the meaning world of ancient Egypt—the multiple notions of time, the structures of immortality, and the commitment to the principle of social justice and human fellowship. Widely acclaimed for his cross-disciplinary approach, Jan Assmann has produced a tanta lizing study of an ancient civilization, even as he has opened new directions in historical investigation. 402 nowned professor of Egyptology at the University of Heidelberg and a winner of the prestigious German Historians Prize, JAN ASSMANN has taught at Harvard, Ya Stanford, Rice, the Getty Research Center, the British Museum, and the Royal Anthro- pological Society. He has published, among other works, Moses the Egyptian and The Search for God in Ancient Egypt. Jacket design by John Candell WWW.HENRYHOLT.COM METROPOLITAN BOOKS HENRY HOLT AND COMPANY 115 West 18th Street New York, New York 10011 Printed in USA.