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biography and contact details

I am an independent Dutch researcher and writer. I received a Master’s Degree in Comparative and Historical Linguistics at Leiden University, The Netherlands (1999), specialising in the Indo-European and Semitic language families. From 2009 onwards, I have enjoyed a position as Consulting Scholar with the Near Eastern department of the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, based in Philadelphia (Pennsylvania, United States of America), and I thank this institution for the courage shown in its support, in this way, for my predominantly catastrophist studies.

My research involves a wide variety of topics in comparative mythology, cultural astronomy, archaeoastronomy and the history of astronomy, religions and art, with occasional excursions in fields as diverse as anomalistics and thanatology. While publishing articles on these subjects in academic journals, I am currently producing a series of volumes on an interdisciplinary catastrophist approach to the world's traditional cosmologies, including creation mythology. Another forthcoming monograph will examine the widespread symbol of the ourobóros or ‘tail-biting dragon’ in the light of electromagnetic disturbances of the geomagnetic field.

Several other monographs are in the works, while I am also planning to set up a free publically accessible and multilingual database of primary sources on cosmological traditions, with an emphasis on myths of cosmic creation and destruction. Such a resource does not currently exist and would provide a useful service insofar as the original sources of myths are generally difficult to identify, often involving old chronicles, missionary reports or anthropological diaries or publications which few people are able to access or read. The database of traditional cosmology would also be most timely in view of the dawning era of renewed scholarly interest in caenocatastrophism - the study of catastrophes within human memory, reaching as far back as the last glacial period.

Marinus Anthony van der Sluijs

e-mail

credits

The website was originally designed by Midnight Oil web design (www.midnightoil.co.uk), but has since been radically revised.

I thank the Mainwaring Archive Foundation (MAF) and Ian Tresman (Knowledge Computing) for their generous support.