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Reply To: Dream a Little Dream . . .

#72556

Where to begin, Shaheda? I think I’ll make this just a brief, off-topic reply to the following tangential (but much appreciated) observation:

You conclude your comment above with the following:

I also noticed that now, if you search a Joe Campbell quote, or other Joe Campbell references, you find your way back to JCF’s Joseph Campbell quotes database, which is a treasure house for the best Joe references. In the past, I’d go to websites such as the Brainy Quotes, or invariably to Bill Moyer’s Power of Myth videos etc.  This new link (perhaps not so new?) new to me, that is, is indeed most helpful.

At JCF we started compiling this database a few years ago in response to the proliferation of Joseph Campbell quotes on the Internet. Many are improperly sourced, or not sourced at all, while others are either misquotes or even things Campbell never said. Of course, any author who wants to quote Joseph Campbell in a published work needs permission from JCF, which is Campbell’s literary heir – but we can’t grant permission if we don’t know where in Campbell’s vast corpus (which includes audio and video lectures as well as interviews) the passage in question appears  (and part of the requirement for granting permission is that the individual using the quote provide a reference when they cite it; readers can then look up the quote in context, and see for themselves if Campbell’s observation actually supports whatever point an author is making).

It is surprising, though, how many people when filling out the form for Michael Lambert (who handles Rights and Permissions for the Foundation), instead of providing a source, simply supply a link to wherever on the Internet they stumbled across those words (such as Goodreads, Brainy Quotes, etc.); alas, that’s not a source – the title of the work and where within that book or audio or video Joe uses these words – but simply someplace in cyberspace that repeats the unsourced passage.

Though either Michael, David Kudler (managing editor of the Collected Works of Joseph Campbell), or myself often have a pretty good idea of what work an unsourced quote might be from, it can take any or all of us hours, days, and even weeks or longer to track down a quote or determine it is a misquote. Over the course of a year that adds up to a lot of man-hours doing other people’s research for them (for free).

So we start compiling a searchable database of known quotes to make that task easier – and we keep adding to it. I essentially serve as the “quote maven” for JCF, maintaining the database (I’ve added over 300 of the currently nearly 500 sourced quotes, and continue to researching the many that are unsourced: we have a “pending” file with nearly a hundred more likely Campbell quotes – most of these we’re pretty sure Joe said, but these are harder to find – I spend about six hours a month whittling away at this list, which keeps expanding).

Now the public is able to search the database of sourced quotes (which you link to in your post above). We really appreciate that Googling a Campbell quote brings one back to JCF, which is the most comprehensive (and accurate) list available. Thanks for bringing that up.

Of course, if anyone does have trouble finding a Joe quote, something they are sure he said that doesn’t seem to appear in the database, they can feel free to pose question in the Joseph Campbell Quotes forum here in Conversations of a Higher Order, and harness the power of the group mind . . .