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Book Title: The Mythic Image|
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The author of the book: Joseph Campbell
Edition: Princeton University Press
Date of issue: November 21st 1981
ISBN 13: 9780691018393
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 348 KB
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A paperback edition of Campbell's major study of the mythology of the world's high civilizations over five millennia. It includes nearly 450 illustrations. The text is the same as that of the 1974 edition.
Mythologist Joseph Campbell was a masterful storyteller, able to weave tales from every corner of the world into compelling, even spellbinding, narratives. His interest in comparative mythology began in childhood, when the young Joe Campbell was taken to see Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show at Madison Square Garden. He started writing articles on Native American mythology in high school, and the parallels between age-old myths and the mythic themes in literature and dreams became a lifelong preoccupation. Campbell's best-known work is The Hero with a Thousand Faces (1949), which became a New York Times paperback best-seller for Princeton in 1988 after Campbell's star turn on the Bill Moyers television program The Power of Myth.
During his early years as a professor of comparative religion at Sarah Lawrence College, Campbell made the acquaintance of Indologist Heinrich Zimmer, a kindred spirit who introduced him to Paul and Mary Mellon, the founders of Bollingen Series. They chose Campbell's The Mythic Image as the culmination of the series, giving it the closing position--number one hundred. A lavishly illustrated and beautifully produced study of the mythology of the world's high civilizations, The Mythic Image received a front-cover review in the New York Times Book Review upon publication. Through the medium of visual art, the book explores the relation of dreams to myth and demonstrates the important differences between oriental and occidental interpretations of dreams and life.
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Read information about the authorJoseph Campbell was an American author and teacher best known for his work in the field of comparative mythology. He was born in New York City in 1904, and from early childhood he became interested in mythology. He loved to read books about American Indian cultures, and frequently visited the American Museum of Natural History in New York, where he was fascinated by the museum's collection of totem poles.
Campbell was educated at Columbia University, where he specialized in medieval literature, and continued his studies at universities in Paris and Munich. While abroad he was influenced by the art of Pablo Picasso and Henri Matisse, the novels of James Joyce and Thomas Mann, and the psychological studies of Sigmund Freud and Carl Jung. These encounters led to Campbell's theory that all myths and epics are linked in the human psyche, and that they are cultural manifestations of the universal need to explain social, cosmological, and spiritual realities.
After a period in California, where he encountered John Steinbeck and the biologist Ed Ricketts, he taught at the Canterbury School, and then, in 1934, joined the literature department at Sarah Lawrence College, a post he retained for many years. During the 40s and '50s, he helped Swami Nikhilananda to translate the Upanishads and The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. He also edited works by the German scholar Heinrich Zimmer on Indian art, myths, and philosophy. In 1944, with Henry Morton Robinson, Campbell published A Skeleton Key to Finnegans Wake. His first original work, The Hero with a Thousand Faces, came out in 1949 and was immediately well received; in time, it became acclaimed as a classic. In this study of the "myth of the hero," Campbell asserted that there is a single pattern of heroic journey and that all cultures share this essential pattern in their various heroic myths. In his book he also outlined the basic conditions, stages, and results of the archetypal hero's journey.
Throughout his life, he traveled extensively and wrote prolifically, authoring many books, including the four-volume series The Masks of God, Myths to Live By, The Inner Reaches of Outer Space and The Historical Atlas of World Mythology. Joseph Campbell died in 1987. In 1988, a series of television interviews with Bill Moyers, The Power of Myth, introduced Campbell's views to millions of people.
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