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Reply To: Questions about the Historical Atlas of World Mythology



Firstly, thank for your answer that covers so much ground including the road travelled by Joe Campbell, Bob Walters and  Alfred van der Marck – the McGraw Hill’s firing of Fred, and Joe’s answer in that he was “incensed at their treatment of his friend and publisher, so he refused to write another word; he returned his advance, and paid an additional $25,000 to secure title to all the material developed up to that point (a huge financial hit)” This part of  history is perhaps known to just a few, and you just documented that so well in your poetic prose.  Thank you ever so much for all the questions you answered so thoroughly. This post is already filed in my Joe Campbell-resource-data-base plus should be in “Resources” category on as well. I’ll refer to it from time to time.

Secondly, thank you also for clearing up one huge misconception that  people hold, that Joe & Jean were wealthy, lived in style in their Greenwich Village apartment, toured and travelled around the world, and retired in Hawaii. That he  didn’t even receive a pension from Sarah Lawrence when he retired is indeed news to me. He is my hero!

You write,

Volume I – The Way of the Animal Powers, was published in 1983 as a beautiful but massive, unwieldy, coffee table sized hardbound book, selling for $75 ( a prohibitive sum back in the early eighties, equivalent to roughly $200 today). When it was released in paperback, still oversized, it was published as two distinct coffee table sized softcover books.”

I was once a proud owner of  Volume I – Part 1, that beautiful but massive coffee table sized hardbound book. So what happened?  My entire book collection was lost & stolen, which included Joe’s first edition of the Mythic Image, the hardbound book, many other Joe-masterpieces, Marija Gimbutas the language of the goddess – beautiful hardbound coffee table version, with Joe’s Foreword.  Volume I – Part 1, I found at the ‘Second Story Book Shop’ in DC. In it were newspaper cuttings of a lecture that Joe was giving somewhere in DC. All priceless to me.

Essentially, those interested, will be able to replace Volume I part 1 (with all its sections as one e-book) , and Volume II, in it’s entirety one day  (digital format only) by — 2025?  But not the print version? 

Now thank you once again for clearing my confusion on what parts have been digitized, what parts will never be digitized because they were not written at all, and what parts are going to one day be available in digital form.  “No sections from the second part of Volume 1, nor any section from Volume II, are available in a digital format.” 

You write, “Instead, we will ultimately end up publishing all the sections of Volume I as one large, beautiful eBook (including the four sections already out) replete with hundreds of images, and the same for Volume II. That date lies a few years in the future (possibly by  2025, given the current publishing schedule).” Looking forward to 2025, Stephen.

Shaheda (in gratitude)


Stephen, talking about the Historical Atlas Vol 1, part 1 and Vol2..print form, (1988 – 1989) I found them at this book store: