The Politics of Myth
A Study of C. G. Jung, Mircea Eliade, and Joseph Campbell
by Robert Ellwood
State University of New York Press, 1999
he vibrant mid-twentieth century vogue for mythology centered around the work of work of three men, the analytic psychologist C. G. Jung, the historian of religion Mircea Eliade, and the popular writer and lecturer on myth Joseph Campbell. Many found that, under their tutelage, myth moved from a classical or nationalistic focus to stories with a psychological thrust that help us understand our lives, and the ultimate quests upon which we humans are embarked. Yet at the same time, all three of these figures have been charged with being anti-modern or anti-semitic partisans of the extreme right. This book endeavors to look at the three as complex human beings set in the context of turbulent times and places, persons flawed yet gifted. We will try to sort out what is ephemeral and what lasting in their legacies. In the process we may learn a good deal about the ideological struggles of the twentieth century, and about the perennial appeal of myth as both a part of that turmoil and an undertow against it.
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