What was the role of ritual in the transition from foraging to farming? Recent research at Çatalhöyük in Southern Anatolia (Turkey) suggests that a major factor driving the emergence of complex society may have been religious routinization. The frequency of rituals appears to have increased over the course of the Neolithic age affecting the scale and structure of early farming societies. We are now studying how ritual and social morphology changed over a much longer time period (Epipalaeolithic to Chalcolithic) and over a wider area (65 Anatolian and Levantine sites).
Whitehouse, Harvey and Ian Hodder (2010). Modes of Religiosity at Çatalhöyük. In I. Hodder (ed.) Religion in the Emergence of Civilization: Çatalhöyük as a case study. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Whitehouse, Harvey, Camilla Mazzucato and Quentin D. Atkinson (2011) Ritual Community and Conflict Project. In Catalhoyuk 2011 Archive Report. Catalhoyuk Research Project.
Whitehouse, Harvey, Camilla Mazzucato, Ian Hodder and Quentin D. Atkinson (2013). Modes of religiosity and the evolution of social complexity at Çatalhöyük. In Ian Hodder (ed.) Religion at Work in a Neolithic Society: Vital Matters. Cambridge: CUP.