Flight of the Wild Gander: Explorations in the Mythological Dimension - Selected Essays, 1944-1968 (The Collected Works of Joseph Campbell)

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9781577312109: Flight of the Wild Gander: Explorations in the Mythological Dimension - Selected Essays, 1944-1968 (The Collected Works of Joseph Campbell)

In Flight of the Wild Gander, renowned mythologist Joseph Campbell — in his first collection of essays, written between 1944 and 1968 — explores the individual and geographical origins of myth, outlining the full range of mythology from Grimm’s fairy tales to American Indian legends. Originally published in 1969, this collection describes the symbolic content of stories: how they are linked to human experience and how they — along with our experiences — have changed over time. Throughout, Campbell explores the function of mythology in everyday life and the forms it may take in the future.

Included are some of Campbell’s first groundbreaking essays: “Bios and Mythos” and “Primitive Man as Metaphysician,” both of which examine the biological basis and necessity for story and mythology, and establish mythology as a basic function or fact of nature. Campbell’s essay “Mythogenesis” turns from the natural and biological to the cultural and historical — the rise, flowering, and decline of a particular myth, a single American Indian legend. Campbell explores how the myth was born, as well as the personal experiences of the visionary medicine man through whose memory the myth was preserved.

This new paperback edition joins other reissues and previously unpublished works as part of the Collected Works of Joseph Campbell.

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From the Publisher:

The origins and symbolisms of mythology over time, as revealed by Joseph Campbell.

About the Author:

Joseph 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, after earning a master’s degree, continued his studies at universities in Paris and Munich. 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 A Skeleton Key to Finnegans Wake. Campbell died in 1987. In 1988, a series of television interviews with Bill Moyers, The Power of Myth, introduced his views to millions of people.

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