Holiday Symbols & Customs (HOLIDAY SYMBOLS AND CUSTOMS)

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9780780809901: Holiday Symbols & Customs (HOLIDAY SYMBOLS AND CUSTOMS)
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People everywhere gather to celebrate many different types of holidays and festivals: religious holidays, such as Christmas and Ramadan; calendar festivals such as New Year's and the Summer Solstice; national holidays, such as Thanksgiving and the Fourth of July; as well as ancient and folkloric days, such as May Day and Halloween. Holidays reflect the history and identity of people of all cultures. The symbols and customs associated with holidays emerge, migrate, undergo transformations, and sometimes fade away. This new revised and expanded edition of Holiday Symbols and Customs provides an introduction to the myriad ways in which people celebrate and the meanings attached to these traditions.

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A comprehensive view of world celebrations, the fourth edition of this compendium (the third edition, edited by Sue Ellen Thompson, was published in 2003) provides succinct descriptions of special occasions. Summaries inform students, teachers, researchers, and librarians of plants, foods, songs, images and masks, processions, amusements, and devotions connected with festivals and commemorations. Covering secular and religious events, the text establishes the importance of holidays such as Bastille Day, Juneteenth, and Yom Kippur to cultural identity. Arranged alphabetically by event, articles (more than 50 of them new) begin with a brief overview of type, date, place, symbols, colors, and related holidays, followed by discussion of the event’s origins and its symbols and customs. Each entry concludes with lists of books and Web sites; there is also a general bibliography. New appendixes cover world calendars, tourism, and world holidays by type (e.g. “Ancient,” “Sporting”). A 63-page index makes it easy to find information on bone fires, gambling, and the Yaqui Easter ceremony as well as to locate celebrations by country. This resource is essential for the reference shelves of middle-school, high-school, public, and college libraries. The emphasis on symbols and customs differentiates it from Holidays, Festivals, and Celebrations of the World (3d ed., 2005), also edited by Henderson, which lists many more events but provides much briefer information for each. --Mary Ellen Snodgrass

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Daniels, Peggy, Gulevich, Tanya, Thompso
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Peggy Daniels, Tanya Gulevich, Sue Ellen Thompson, Helene Henderson (Editor), Cherie D. Abbey (Editor)
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