Cultural Discourse looks at a broad range of cultural issues.
17th May 2016

Ebert’s New Book is Out!

Order here: https://www.createspace.com/6281634

myths gods

Preface

The essays collected in this book constitute, as it were, a sort of retrospective of two decades as an American cultural critic. None have previously appeared in book form, however, and most of them have never been published before. Only the first two essays, “Visions of a Biomechanical Apocalypse (First Version)” and “Ancient Myth and Modern Science” were published in periodicals (the now defunct Lapis and Parabola magazine, respectively).[i] I did “publish” my essay about the Unabomber on my blog at cultural-discourse.com, and also my piece on Thomas Pynchon’s novel V. that concludes this collection, but those essays are no longer available on my web site. The rest of the essays were simply lying around on my laptop in varying stages of completion, and all have been rewritten, polished, and given new coats of paint.

The essays were selected by me for this collection because they all hover around what has been the core theme of my career as a cultural critic: namely, the tensions between ancient ritual, symbol and myth on the one hand, and the constant barrage of technological innovations on the other, innovations that have destabilized these traditions, sometimes wiping them out completely, and at other times discrediting the transcendental spinal axes holding them upright. Gianni Vattimo has not called this the age of “soft truths” for nothing.[ii]

As any reader of my books knows very well, I never arrange my essays haphazardly, and the case is no less so with the present collection despite its apparent diversity, for it is arranged in “epochs” in order to tell a story: the history of the transformation of the gods into consumer icons and pop culture signifiers. The opening two essays in the section entitled “Tensions Between Myth and Science” form a sort of prologue that sets up some of the basic problems: the first essay, “Visions of a Biomechanical Apocalypse (First Version)” raises the possibility that one day our Western civilization may crumble into ruins like the shattered Roman Colosseum pictured in Thomas Cole’s 1832 painting Interior of the Colosseum, or the rubble of antiquity that is so frequently depicted in the art of Frederic Edwin Church. The essay should be regarded, then, as a sort of literary equivalent to one of those paintings, although it takes the perspective of someone from the future looking back on the ruins of Technological Civilization.

The second essay, “Ancient Myth and Modern Science” suggests that scientists, when creating theories about the origin and evolution of the universe may be unconsciously drawing upon mythic structures to organize their narratives (a point not original with me, however, for it has been made by William Irwin Thompson and others).[iii] But the essay therefore suggests the possibility of a mythologized science, one which does not discredit myths but actually returns them to us in a new guise. Indeed, science may one day rescue metaphysics for us from the rubble heap of the collapsed metaphysical age, since the stories brought back from near death survivors, if true, tell of a strange and beautifully luminous Other World that may exist beyond death. Nietzsche’s critique of the fable of the “true world” created by humanity as a metaphysical comfort for the sufferings of this one may turn out to have been wrong after all.[iv]

The book’s second division, “The Pre-Metaphysical Age: From the Neolithic to Ancient Sumer,” is composed, likewise, of two essays. The metaphysical age is a concept that was invented by Heidegger,[v] which he demarcated as extending from Plato to Husserl and then theoretician Peter Sloterdijk added his concept of a pre-metaphysical age[vi] (equivalent to Jean Gebser’s mythical consciousness structure), whereas Gianni Vattimo (and others) has mostly worked out the consequences of the post-metaphysical age of contemporary modernity.

The first essay of this section, “On the Symbolism of Tools: Hoe and Sickle” sketches out the idea that most tools do not, and have not, originated with pure functionality in mind, but almost always as part of a ritual context controlled by mythological signifieds. Hence, the genealogical line that can be traced from the Acheulean hand axe of Homo erectus—too heavy to be of any practical use—to Thor’s hammer to the judge’s gavel traces out the evolution of the implement from a mythological to a merely secularized juridical context. Mythological signifieds act as controlling ideas on technical implements until their original meanings are forgotten and they are displaced to other contexts, becoming semantically depleted in the process. It is a bit like visiting ancient Hohokam ruins in the Arizona desert, wondering what happened to all the people who once lived there and have now left behind only enigmatic crumbling shells whose meaning and significance are long since forgotten.

The second essay in this section tells the story of the tensions between two ancient Sumerian deities, one an agrarian god and inventor of the plough named Ninurta, and the other a patron god of craftsmen named Enki. The chapter describes the battles between these two gods, one from the more northerly city of Nippur and the other from the southernmost city of Eridu, and finds that even back then, more than five thousand years ago, there were tensions between farmers and craftsmen of the towns inside the walls like blacksmiths.

The next section, “The Dawning of the Metaphysical Age,” is composed of only one essay, an analysis of the imagery of this book’s cover painting by the Dutch Utrecht artist Dirck van Baburen entitled Prometheus Being Chained by Vulcan. The deed, as Hesiod makes clear, is an epochal one that brings the Golden Age to a close and inaugurates the rule of Zeus with his victory over the pre-metaphysical age Titans, crowned by his stealing the metaphysical vulva from the Great Mother and giving birth to Athena, goddess of the age of (logocentric) wisdom and rationality that will soon follow. From Athena—who condemns the pre-metaphysical age Furies of matriarchy—to Plato’s separation of Being from Becoming through elevation of the Forms to pure transcendence, there is only a short leap. Both are masculinist feats which inaugurate Heidegger’s metaphysical age.

The book’s final section, “The Post-Metaphysical Age” is composed of four essays: the first is an analysis of the great writer Paul Bowles, who was a sort of tangential member of the Beats, and whose 1949 novel The Sheltering Sky was already moving ahead into the post-metaphysical age—just as Mark Rothko’s paintings were doing at about the same time[vii]—and showing us the consequences of the collapse of the Transcendental Signifieds that once anchored the Western tradition in an age of ritual, myth and philosophical metaphysics. With those signifieds gone, the couple who form the protagonists of the novel find themselves—as do we moderns—adrift, floating across the Saharan desert without aim, purpose or direction only to end up with disastrous consequences (a fable that perfectly describes our contemporary situation).

In the next essay, “Heidegger vs. Coca-Cola,” the ancient tradition of the conservative agrarian (or in Heidegger’s case, rustic) who objects to the technological transformations of modernity are scaled down to two signifiers as metonyms to make the case that not everyone is so enchanted with all these gadgets —which Heidegger calls “mere objects” as opposed to “Things,” the former abandoned and cut off from Being while the latter remain anchored precisely in Being.[viii] Heidegger was one of the first thinkers to warn of the consequences of nihilism and superficiality that such a consumer world—which I have simplified in the essay to the signifier of “Coca-Cola,”—cut adrift from everything local and rooted in meaning and tradition, would bring about.

In the penultimate essay on Ted Kaczynski, the rustic’s resentment against Industrial modernity becomes deadly and degenerates from the plane of the Imaginary and the Symbolic back to the zoological violence of the Real that begins, and also ends, every high civilization (all of them eventually disappear into a cloud of vaporized signifiers—whether they are “vaporized” by Christian lynch mobs, say, or philosophical extermination, as in the case of the wiping out and absorption of Buddhism in India). Kaczynski tried to play the game first on the plane of the Symbolic with his essay on “Industrial Society and its Future” but did not have the patience or tenacity to learn the craft of writing and go through the agon of finding a market for his ideas. So he resorted to another craft altogether, that of bomb-making, and began mailing bombs to the various men of science whom he saw as the originators of the shallow signifiers of consumer society floating all around us. By deleting those men from existence, he supposed that the source of such signifiers—Coca-Cola, for instance—would simply disappear and Industrial society eventually crumble and collapse in on itself: exactly the vision that I sketched out in this book’s opening essay.

The concluding essay, then, comes back full circle—in mythical fashion—with a discussion of Thomas Pynchon’s novel V., just as it opens with a brief image from that novel in the inceptual essay. But this time the consequences of the floating signifier known as “V.” are fathomed, for Pynchon represents it as a signifier that simply will not stick to any Signifieds whatsoever. Herbert Stencil’s inability to even verify the existence of the woman “V” is testament to the fact that meaning now in the post-post-modern age is nowhere to be found since all signifiers are sliding and skidding free of their signifieds and can therefore be made to refer to anything whatsoever.

So, those are the nine or so exhibits that form this author’s retrospective glance backwards at a two-decade long career as an American cultural critic in an age when the publishing ecosphere that once enabled such individuals to thrive has simply popped like one of Peter Sloterdijk’s macrospheres and disappeared, leaving the individual to become a rogue scavenger foraging for sustenance entirely on his own.

The essays, then, tell two stories: the obvious one is that just outlined above, of the gradual transformation of those Transcendental Signifieds—Derrida’s term[ix]—once known as the gods into Plato’s Forms and the Christian Logos, and then eventually into the philosophical signifieds of philosophers like Kant and Hegel that anchored the metaphysical tradition’s last century of existence before it was ruptured by Nietzsche and Heidegger, and then later with French postmodern thought. With the semiotic vacancies left in the Western metaphysical Clearing opened up, ads, icons (in their semantically depleted sense) and commercials instead of Ideas began to “unconceal” themselves from out of the darkness of the Heideggerian woods and to substitute a world of rapidly evanescent signifiers for one anchored in meaning and tradition.

The other story told by this retrospective is a disguised autobiography, one that tells the tale of a cultural critic’s evolution from the study of comparative mythology to that of Critical Theory and media studies. Unlike most critical theoreticians of today, I began in the field of ritual, symbol and myth—which I studied for about a decade and a half from 1990 to approximately 2005 or so—and then gradually moved out of it when I realized that the field was becoming depleted of ideas and so moved on into the fields of media studies and finally contemporary postmodern philosophy, where ideas were still rich and full of possibilities. I saw that there was much work to be done in combining all three fields—comparative mythology, media studies and continental Critical Theory—to be applied toward an analysis of our contemporary moment.

It has been difficult, however, if not impossible, to make a living doing this sort of thing these days outside the university system—and even there, professors tell me it is becoming more and more difficult to survive at all—but at least I have managed to do it, against all advice from friends and family members, for two decades, and have produced 19 books, a website and countless YouTube video lectures as a result of my stubborn tenacity.

I hope you enjoy the retrospective.

                                                                                                           –April, 2016 (Mesa, Arizona)

 

Preface

[i] For “Visions of a Biomechanical Apocalypse,” see Lapis #5, 1997, although the essay has been slightly rewritten and polished up for inclusion in the present volume. The Lapis essay was expanded, revised and changed completely to become a chapter in my second book Celluloid Heroes & Mechanical Dragons, but it scarcely resembles its original prototype, which is why I have included it here and called the “First Version.” For “Ancient Myth and Modern Science,” see Parabola magazine, Fall, 2008, although here again I have revised and slightly rewritten the essay.

   [ii] See Gianni Vattimo, A Farewell to Truth, trans. William McCuaig, (Columbia University Press, 2014).

   [iii] For instance see William Irwin Thompson, Imaginary Landscape: Making Worlds of Myth and Science (NY: Palgrave Macmillan, 1989) or Misia Landau, Narratives of Human Evolution (Yale University Press, 1991).

   [iv] See “How the ‘True World’ Finally Became a Fable” in Twilight of the Idols, collected in The Portable Nietzsche, ed. and trans. Walter Kaufmann, (NY: Penguin Books, 1968), 485ff.

   [v] See “The End of Philosophy and the Task of Thinking” in Martin Heidegger, Basic Writings, trans. David Farrell Krell (NY: Harper Perennial, 2008), 427ff.

   [vi] See Peter Sloterdijk and Hans-Jurgen Heinrichs, Neither Sun Nor Death, trans. Steve Corcoran (Los Angeles: Semiotexte, 2011), 167.

   [vii] See the chapter “Mark Rothko” in John David Ebert, Art After Metaphysics (NY: Create Space, 2013), 53ff.

   [viii] Martin Heidegger, Country Path Conversations, trans. Bret W. Davis (Indiana University Press, 2010), 128.

   [ix] See “Structure, Sign and Play in the Discourse of the Human Sciences,” in Jacques Derrida, Writiing and Difference, trans. Alan Bass (The University of Chicago Press, 1978), esp. 280.

 

 

 

 

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21st March 2016

Donald Trump: A Few More Words

On Donald Trump: A Few More Words

by John David Ebert

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Civilizations do not just unfold randomly. They have a morphological structure to them, with distinct epochs and phases just like living organisms. Oswald Spengler, in his Decline of the West, was not even the first to point this out, for he was coming out of a tradition of ideas regarding historical cycles going back through Goethe, Vico and even Hesiod’s Four World Ages. The Hindus, too, with their great yugas, had similar concepts.

The motivating force, for instance, that brings a civilization into being is always the same: there is a sudden recognition of Death, and a new mortuary cult, with new burial practices, comes into being as the response to the challenge of the metaphysical terror of Death (to borrow now from Toynbee’s vocabulary). The Egyptian pyramids correspond morphologicaly to the West’s Gothic cathedrals and to the now lost wooden temples of the Doric and Vedic ages. The gigantic temples of ancient Sumer from its Late Uruk period (c. 3300 BC) have mostly disintegrated because they were built not with stone, for the most part, but mud brick. They were, however, huge–the White Temple dedicated to the god Anu at the city of Uruk is an example (shown below).

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The great cities that then come into being are mostly concerned with myth and metaphysics until they cycle down into their End Phases, which are also morphologicaly similar. Such phases are characterized by huge and impersonal cosmopolises filled with rootless populations who have poured in from the countryside looking for work, and they are concerned not with metaphysics but with the pragmatics and economics of living. Money now becomes the motivating force as the religious lyricism that brought the society into being begins to grow dim, until finally vanishing altogether. And politics, once based on metaphysical ideas–whether of divinely appointed kings or membership in a city-state polis–begins to disintegrate into mere zoological power struggles.

Which brings us to Donald J. Trump and my earlier warnings this year about his ominous rise to power. Violence is now becoming a standard and expected feature of his rallies, as protesters clash, again and again, with ever more increasing violence, against Trump’s supporters, who are beginning to resemble, more and more, an angry mob loyal only to its leader.

Violence entered the political arena in ancient Rome, too, when the land-reformer Tiberius Gracchus was murdered in 133 BC, beaten to death by senators in broad daylight. And let us not forget the outbreak of the Social War that then followed in  91-88 BC, in which the Roman general Sulla, together with his loyal veterans, turned their army around and marched on Rome as an unprecedented event. Sulla declared a permanent state of emergency after winning the war against Marius and became Rome’s first dictator to hold the office for the rest of his life.

Trump says he has a big job ahead of him in cleaning up ISIS, just as did Pompey the Great, when he was appointed the task of cleaning up the pirates of the Mediterranean and then stabilizing the Middle East, which he invaded in 63 BC, and then stormed the city of Jerusalem, thus clearing the path for the rise of the Roman-appointed client king Herod the Great. Herod’s reign was generally disastrous, as his paranoia led to increasing assassinations among members of his family that he thought might try to murder him and take over the office. A similar disaster lay in store for Nouri al-Maliki, as his persecution of the Sunnis–immediately after Obama (disastrously) pulled American forces out of Iraq in 2011–cleared the path for the rise of ISIS.

Trump claims to have hired a “private security force”–who wear plainclothes–after a violent altercation between a Secret Service agent and a Time magazine photographer which took place in Virginia on February 29 (photo shown above). Wealthy men, too, like Caesar, Pompey and Crassus, were able to afford to buy the loyalty of private armies, and they used them to storm Rome and seize control of its political machinery.

Trump has threatened that if he doesn’t get the GOP nomination, then there will be riots; and this has an “ominous” sound to it. In fact, it is beginning to sound more and more as if Trump intends to take the nomination “by whatever means necessary,” and if he comes up short on delegates, there could be even more–and more serious–violence at the GOP Convention in July.

When the political machinery of a civilization begins to break down–as ours here in America has been doing since the 9/11 attacks–ideas gradually give way to violent power struggles. It is like a return to Nature: from the “oystrygods gaggin fishygods” (to use Joyce’s phrase) that marks the start of the civilization, and then onward past the metaphysics that civilize it and transform it from a zone of Maximal Stress to a Zone of Cooperation, it inevitably returns back to Nature, back to zoology, and back to tribalism.

Trust me: Trump will get the nomination and he will not just beat Hillary Clinton, but he will beat her by a landslide.

After that, it might be wise to just stay indoors.

 

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29th January 2016

On the Ominous Significance of Donald Trump

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On the Ominous Significance of Donald Trump

An Essay by John David Ebert

Donald Trump, as everyone knows, is ahead in all the national polls. He will most likely get the GOP nomination, but I think it also likely that his opponent will be Hillary Clinton and that he will be elected president by a landslide. Hillary is cool and calculating and she appeals to the intellect, but there is something cold-bloodedly reptilian about her, and the aura of deceit and dishonesty hangs over her head like a cloud. Trump, on the other hand, is winning because he appeals to deeper, darker gut-level emotions that stir anger and resentment against what he calls “the Establishment” in Washington. He presents himself as an outsider–just as Reagan did–a businessman who doesn’t even like to be called a “politician,” a word he uses with evident disgust.

Trump boycotted the Fox News sponsored GOP debate last night when a press release put out by Fox News CEO Roger Ailes offended him with its sarcastic comment that “the Ayatollah and Putin both intend to treat Trump unfairly if he becomes president. A nefarious source tells us that Trump has his own secret plan to replace his Cabinet with his Twitter followers to see if he should even go to those meetings.” Trump regarded these comments as insulting to his dignity and responded by holding his own rival event last night, a rally for Veterans, which he scheduled to take place five or so miles away in Iowa at almost exactly the same time as the final GOP debate before Monday’s Caucus. During the rally, which was televised on CNN, Trump boasted that he raised five million dollars within 24 hours for the Veterans (one million of which he claims to have donated himself). All well and good.

However. There is something sinister about Trump, something that chills the blood and does not bode well for the future of American politics, since I believe that he will indeed be elected the next US president. Trump is a figure straight out of the days of ancient Rome, and particularly those troubled days of the first century BC when its Republic was being torn to pieces by Civil Wars.

He reminds me, in particular, of the sort of privately wealthy men who formed the First Triumvirate, and who were so wealthy that each could afford to pay for his own private army, an army be it said whose loyalty was not given to Rome but to the highest bidder.

Crassus, for instance, who is the figure who perhaps most resembles him–and whose portrait bust even bears a certain similarity to him–made his fortunes (and they were, like Trump’s huge) off of real estate, especially buying huge latifundia that enslaved people to work the fields in mass agribusiness-like agglomerations that kept the grain flowing into Rome. This was one reason why Crassus was so anxious about putting down the Spartacus slave revolt, for Spartacus himself was killed by the legions employed by Crassus in 71 BC (although Pompey, on his way back from his conquest of Spain, claims to have finished off the revolt and was given honors in Rome for doing so when he returned, much to the chagrin of Crasssus).

But when Crassus announced that he was going to clean up the Parthian menace in the Middle East–sound familiar?–his campaign ended in disaster at the Battle of Carrhae (53 BC), where his son Publius was caught and beheaded and when the Romans saw the Parthians marching toward them with Publius’s head on the end of a spear, Crassus was shocked and dismayed. But the beheading of Crassus himself soon followed and nearly 20,000 Roman troops were massacred while 10,000 more were taken prisoner.

This event destabilized the First Triumvirate, especially since Pompey’s wife Julia–Julius Caesar’s only daughter–had died the year before. Caesar was away on campaign in Gaul, where he made his fortunes capturing slaves and sending them back to Rome to be sold on the market. Rumors circulated that Pompey would have to be made full dictator of Rome in order to keep the peace, but when Pompey heard that Caesar had turned around and marched his troops headed back to Rome, he instead ordered the city to be evacuated and fled with his privately paid legions across to Greece. There had been a law passed as a result of the Civil War between Marius and Sulla–under the latter of whom Pompey rose to fame as a great general–that a general could not enter the city with his troops, but when Caesar daringly broke the law and crossed the Rubicon, all bets were off (Sulla, incidentally, had been the first to declare himself permanent dictator as the result of proclaiming a permanent state of emergency in Rome).

At the Battle of Pharsalus in 48 BC, Caesar, who was outnumbered two to one, was victorious over Pompey, who fled with his family to Egypt, and when he stepped off the boat one of Pompey’s own centurions immediately cut off his head and saved it for Caesar, who followed and was now sole dictator of the Roman Empire. (His murder in 44 BC was executed by Brutus, who had fought with Pompey at Pharsalus, and Cassius who had fought with Crassus at Carrhae).

I could go  on, but I think you get the picture. Donald Trump is a privately wealthy man like Pompey or Caesar or Crassus–he is completely funding his own campaign–and the Veteran rally last night has the feel about it–at least to me, anyway–of laying the groundwork for appealing to soldiers who might, one fine day, become his own private army whose loyalty is given to him rather than the United States of America. After all, he has already shown that he cares nothing for political protocol in skipping the GOP debate: he simply went around it, doing as he pleased, but this may set an ominous precedent for future legalities he may simply decide to step around while in office. Trump, his career has made clear, always finds a way to get what he wants.

And what he wants is the following: he has promised to build a wall along the southern border of the United States and get Mexico, somehow, to pay for it. The building of walls is of course an unfailing sign that a civilization has entered into its Universal State phase, the end phase and ultimate outcome of all great high civilizations.

And he has also promised mass deportations of all illegal immigrants in this country, which sounds to me like a feat that would require “special forces” and “detention camps” to be set up as temporary housing for them while in transit. I don’t see how 11 million illegal immigrants could be rounded up and sent off in any other way.

He has also promised to put a ban on all Muslims attempting to enter the United States, legally or otherwise. Now correct me if I’m wrong, but the entire basis of the United States was set up as a haven for the religiously persecuted of the Old World: it was precisely people whose religions were not tolerated elsewhere that this country opened its arms to embrace. So banning an entire people based on their religious identity is about as un-American an idea as it gets.

He has also promised to “fix” the 17 trillion dollar deficit and to put the kaibosh on the deal Obama made with Iran. No more losing 500 billion a year in trade deficits with China: Trump promises to end all that, though he doesn’t specify how.

He has also promised to “destroy ISIS,” (just as Crassus promised to rid Palestine of the Parthian menace) but he has not given any clear idea what sort of government he would put in their place, while Iraq would most likely descend into chaos and further anarchy. Perhaps he intends to prop it up with corporations that would hi-jack all its oil in order to fund his other massive projects. A local government? I doubt it. Not with Trump running the show. Instead Iraq would most likely become annexed and run by his New Empire.

But it sounds to me like Donald Trump is a man who will, once elected president–and I think I can guarantee you that he will–simply do as he pleases, just as he did in circumventing the Fox News GOP debate last night with his own privately staged and funded rally for ex-soldiers.

Trump is a figure who should make everybody nervous. He may very well shred the Constitution, usurp all powers of the Executive Branch and use his wealth and emotionally-driven followers to help transform him into America’s First Dictator.

Who knows, even lists of proscriptions may follow, just as the proscriptions of Sulla announced everyone who would be murdered without trial or due process of any kind, since they had proven to be political opponents during his wars with Marius.

America, it seems to me, may very well be transformed into a police state–it would certainly have to be if Trump means what he says, and I believe that he has the means, motives and wealth to make it happen.

Get ready, Americans: the Republic–whose founding fathers deliberately (and now, it seems, ironically) founded it on the model of the Roman Republic with all its checks and balances–is about to be torn to pieces once again.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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19th October 2015

A New Book of Essays by John David Ebert is Out

EbertCulturalDecayCover

This book is now out and can be ordered on Amazon at: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1518673422?keywords=cultural%20decay%20rate&qid=1445282994&ref_=sr_1_1&sr=8-1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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27th September 2015

New Book Out by John David Ebert

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Preface:

New York is a Dead Museum

by John David Ebert

excerpted from Texts: Collected Book Reviews from Joseph Campbell to Deleuze and Guattari

This book can be ordered on Amazon at:

http://www.amazon.com/Texts-Collected-Reviews-Campbell-Guattari/dp/151752783X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1443360322&sr=8-1&keywords=Texts+collected+book+reviews+from+joseph+campbell+to+deleuze+and+guattari

CONTENTS
Preface: New York is a Dead Museum 11
Baksheesh and Brahman
Asian Journals: India
Joseph Campbell 21
Dark Age Ahead
Jane Jacobs 27
Civilization and its Enemies:
The Next Stage of History
Lee Harris 31
Guns, Germs and Steel
Jared Diamond 35
Nart Sagas from the Caucasus
John Colarusso 41
The Mind in the Cave:
Consciousness and the Origins of Art
David Lewis-Williams 45
Plato Prehistorian
Mary Settegast 49
When Zarathustra Spoke:
The Reformation of Neolithic Culture and
Religion
Mary Settegast 53
The Indus Civilization:
A Contemporary Perspective
Gregory L. Possehl 57
Ancient Cities of the Indus Valley Civilization
Jonathan M. Kenoyer 61
America
Jean Baudrillard 67
The Ever-Present Origin
Jean Gebser 71
The Decline of the West
Oswald Spengler 75
The Mechanical Bride
Marshall McLuhan 79
Simulacra and Simulation
Jean Baudrillard 81
The Oak King, the Holly King and the Unicorn:
The Myths and Symbolism of the Unicorn Tapestries
John Williamson 85
The Disappearance of Childhood
Neil Postman 89
The Gutenberg Galaxy
Marshall McLuhan 93
Amusing Ourselves to Death:
Public Discourse in the Age of Show Business
Neil Postman 97
The Original Accident
Paul Virilio 101
The Intelligence of Evil or the Lucidity Pact
Jean Baudrillard 105
The Greek Alexander Romance
Pseudo-Callisthenes 107
The Information Bomb
Paul Virilio 111
Imaginary Landscape:
Making Worlds of Myth and Science
William Irwin Thompson 115
Desert Screen:
War at the Speed of Light
Paul Virilio 117
The Shahnameh:
The Persian Book of Kings
Abolqasem Ferdowsi 121
The Secret History of the World:
As Laid Down by the Secret Societies
Mark Booth 125
Re-Visioning Psychology
James Hillman 129
The Mythic Dimension:
Selected Essays 1959-1987
Joseph Campbell 133
The Olmecs:
America’s First Civilization
Richard A. Diehl 135
Terror From the Air
Peter Sloterdijk 139
Coming Into Being:
Texts and Artifacts in the Evolution of Consciousness
William Irwin Thompson 141
The Plague of Fantasies
Slavoj Zizek 145
The University of Disaster
Paul Virilio 149
Postmodernism, or,
The Cultural Logic of Late Capitalism
Fredric Jameson 153
Neither Sun Nor Death
Peter Sloterdijk and Hans-Jurgen Heinrichs 157
8
Anti-Oedipus:
Capitalism and Schizophrenia
Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari 161
The Agony of Power
Jean Baudrillard 167
Living in the End Times
Slavoj Zizek 171
Philosophy in the Present
Alain Badiou and Slavoj Zizek 175
What is Philosophy?
Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari 179
The Fold:
Leibniz and the Baroque
Gilles Deleuze 185
A Question of Values
Morris Berman 189
Spheres I: Bubbles
Peter Sloterdijk 197
Telemorphosis
Jean Baudrillard 203
Ethics:
An Essay on the Understanding of Evil
Alain Badiou 207
Difference and Repetition
Gilles Deleuze 211
MSC: Maximal Stress Cooperation:
The Driving Force of Cultures
Heiner Muhlmann 215
Impossible Exchange
Jean Baudrillard 219
A Thousand Plateaus
Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari 221
9
Of Grammatology
Jacques Derrida 225
Glittering Images:
A Journey Through Art From Egypt to Star Wars
Camille Paglia 229
The Art of Philosophy:
Wisdom as Practice
Peter Sloterdijk 233
The Ontology of the Accident
An Essay on Destructive Plasticity
Catherine Malabou 239
On the New
Boris Groys 245
Under Suspicion:
A Phenomenology of Media
Boris Groys 253

This book is available for ordering on Amazon at: http://www.amazon.com/Texts-Collected-Reviews-Campbell-Guattari/dp/151752783X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1443360322&sr=8-1&keywords=Texts+collected+book+reviews+from+joseph+campbell+to+deleuze+and+guattari

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