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James JOYCE:Joseph Campbell and Jean Erdman -the Hero-Heroine Dance

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    Good morning from Ireland on Bloomsday 2020, 16 June, below is a paragraph some links from Dublin, and JCF, might be of interest!?  Our local “omphalos” is the Joyce Tower in Sandycove, overlooking Dublin Bay where the opening episode of Ulysses, “Telemachus” is set.  I have enjoyed researching and telling friends in my local James Joyce group about links between Campbell, Erdman and Joyce. ( Perhaps the largest Finnegans Wake reading group in the world, we have gone all Zoom until the Covid restrictions are over).

    REVIEW of recent ZOOM talk on JOYCE, Campbell and Erdman 

    RTE Ulysses Reading PODCASTS

    INFO on James Joyce at Joseph Campbell Foundation website

    Virtual Bloomsday from the Joyce Tower 2020

    James JOYCE:Joseph Campbell and Jean Erdman -the Hero-Heroine Dance
    Campbell (1904-1987) first encountered James Joyce’s Ulysses as a student in Paris, in 1927. After this pivotal moment in his career, Campbell co-authored A Skeleton Key to Finnegans Wake, published in 1944. Joycean scholar Roland McHugh observed: “The first comprehensive analysis was Campbell and Robinson’s….the Skeleton Key busters a stronger conviction of that subject’s dignity than any earlier study, and supports this conviction with an impressive bulk of novel interpretation. The popular image of Finnegans Wake is the image created by Campbell and Robinson: several recent ‘guidebooks’ seem to owe little to any subsequent investigators”.  (ref. McHugh, Roland / The Sigla of Finnegans Wake, 1976)

    Campbell’s subsequent writing and lecturing continued to move through the labyrinths of Joyce’s writings. His essays on the work of Joyce are collected in Mythic Worlds, Modern Words-On the Art of James Joyce (1993 & 2003). Campbell remained an enthusiastic speaker and teacher about Joyce throughout his lifetime, and recordings of his talks are also available

    Jean Erdman, (1916-2020), the award-winning choreographer, director and dancer, co-founded the Theater of the Open Eye in New York. She toured the world, including the Dublin Arts festival, with her dance creations, and her acclaimed performances of Anna Livia Plurabelle. Jean’s inspiring work on global dance traditions, with influences from Irish culture, Joyce, and Yeats, are documented in The Ecstasy of Being: Mythology and the Dance (2017).

    Best known for his book The Hero with a Thousand Faces (1949), Campbell’s delivery has engaged his listeners, writers, artists and film makers. Campbell’s lifelong studies of world mythologies and their relevance to the arts and everyday life, were the focus of the ever-popular 1988 TV series The Power of Myth, screened most recently on Netflix in 2018.

    Bloomsday greetings from Joseph CAMPBELL® Mythological Round Table® Group of Dublin at Mythic Links Ireland and thanks as always to our great friends in the Joseph Campbell Foundation.
    Goodbye for now, Mary


    What a wonderful greeting, Mary, which I’m reading in California not long after dawn here on Bloomsday (sorry for the delay in your post appearing; for a first post it was auto-flagged as potential spam due to the multiple links – such wonderful links – and needed to be manually approved).

    All roads lead back to Joyce – or at least through, Joyce – for Joseph Campbell. Here, in a yet to be published work, Joe explains what happened when he arrived in Paris to work on his doctorate:

    Well, it opened up first in Paris. Everybody was there—Picasso, Joyce, Matisse; I’ll never forget the exhibit of the Intransigents out in the Bois de Boulogne. I knew nothing about art; New York knew nothing. I learned about modern art and its relationship to all these myths⁠.

    And I discovered Joyce⁠. The whole thing opened up like crazy when I found Ulysses, which was forbidden in the States⁠. I had to smuggle my volume in. You went to a bookstore feeling you were doing something pretty far out and said, “Avez-vous Ulysses?”⁠

    That third chapter of Ulysses—“Ineluctable modality of the visible: at least that if no more, thought through my eyes. Signatures of all things I am here to read, seaspawn and seawrack, the nearing tide, that rusty boot.” I couldn’t understand what I was reading! What the hell’s going on here? I went to Sylvia Beach at the Shakespeare and Company Book Shop in indignation: “How do you read this?” And she said, “As follows.” And gave me a start.

    Joyce assumed scholarship. He wrote things only a person with a bit of literacy would know. And he’d been a Catholic who had found a way out without losing his symbols⁠.

    The first drafts of Finnegans Wake were being published in the avant-garde magazine transition, edited by Eugene Jolas⁠. I must say I was totally baffled as everybody was, but I bought the whole year of transition as it came out and studied it closely, realizing there was something there that was meaning a lot to me, and I didn’t quite know what it was (so, by the time Finnegans Wake was published in 1938, I was ready for it⁠).

    I was pulled in. And with that I began to lose touch with my Ph.D. direction. Suddenly the whole modern world opened up. With a bang!⁠

    No surprise, he never did finish that Ph.D.


      Thank you for the links .

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