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Other titles in the Collected Works of Joseph Campbell series:
Mythic Imagination: Collected Short Fiction (Collected Works of Joseph Campbell)by Joseph. Campbell
Synopses & Reviews
"In his introduction, Kudler, Managing Editor of the Collected Works of Joseph Campbell, supplies what to him is a self-evident explanation as to why only one of the seven surviving pieces of Campbell's short fiction was published before: 'Given that his fiction hewed to the tropes of neither the realistic nor the speculative fiction, it's no surprise that Campbell couldn't find a publisher for his stories.' Most readers won't be surprised either, but for different reasons. Though Campbell had a great mind for mythology, he fumbles here with fiction that is unredeemed by portentous and overwrought prologues. Four of the stories form a 'Where Moth and Rust' cycle, which 'was discovered in a manuscript that comes to us, by a curious turn, from the most distant future,' and depicts a 'mood, which so collides (to its own great discredit) with the wholesome hopefulness of the modern Christian.' That ponderous preamble doesn't make the first story, 'The Forgotten Man,' in which the white U.S. president wakes up as an African-American and is forced from office, any more palatable. Given the insights Campbell was capable of in his influential non-fiction, it's not surprising to learn that these subpar efforts predated his decision to concentrate on comparative mythology. Readers hoping for a reflection of his unquestioned expertise and sophistication in other areas will be disappointed. (Nov.)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
Before he was the engaging professor who brought mythology into people's living rooms through his "The Power of Myth" conversations with Bill Moyers and the thinker whose ideas influenced Star Wars and whose "follow your bliss" entered the lexicon, Joseph Campbell was a young man who tried his hand at fiction. He published his first short story at 29, after years of Depression-era unemployment spent living off money earned in a jazz combo and reading the world's great literature in a syllabus of his own devising. Readers here find portraits of the hero's journey and rich symbolism, magical realism, down-to-Earth concern with the ravages of the Second World War, and even a U.S. president who wakes one morning to find his skin changed from white to black. Compelling in their own right, these seven stories are essential for longtime Campbell fans and the many who continue to discover him anew.
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