Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Read Along With Catharine

And so, another quarter in Myth Camp begins....
The Spring quarter for First Year Myth Campers consists of (as usual) three classes:
European Sacred Tradition
What it's all about, Alfie:  This course analyzes, explores, questions, and reconsiders the changing faces of the mythologies associated with the Arthurian Romances in representative Medieval, Victorian and Modern texts. 
What we're reading:
Myth and Philosophy
What it's all about, Alfie: This course examines the historical movement between myth and philosophy in Western culture. These two different but overlapping modes of discourse have been and still remain related to one another in a variety of ways. 
What we're reading:
Jungian Depth Psychology
What it's about, Alfie: This course will provide an in-depth exploration of Jung's work, and will give particular attention to key aspects of his psychology such as the symbolic process and the transcendent function, as well as the landscape of his metapsychology.
What we're reading:
Also, for the Depth Psychology class, we will be required to view Mike Newell's film, Enchanted April, and the original, 1951 version of Robert Wise's The Day the Earth Stood Still.

So, it's going to be a busy quarter.  I've started reading the Jungian Depth Psychology stuff first, since that's the part of the program I enjoy least. (Sorry, but it's true.) Even though it's my least favorite, it's still pretty interesting.  But when I say that studying for a doctorate is not like any other academic experience you'll ever have, I'm not kidding. For me, it will be interesting to see who comes back for their second year.  Nothing short of full-scale financial ruin could keep me away.  I'm hoping the passage of the new student loan legislation means that tuition money will be a bit easier to come by for me. 

But I have noticed that some of my fellow campers are still trying to work this program the way they did in high school -- memorization and regurgitation. This program is about something totally different, which is why it's so difficult to latch on to. It's about learning how to think.  Really think.  On a deeper, more poignant, more molecular level than anything we've ever been asked to do in school.  It's hard.  Really hard.  And it's bound to get harder.  Why I love it so much is a mystery to me.  I just know that this is where I'm supposed to be right now.  It is where I belong. 

Well, I'd love to stay and chat for a bit... but, hey... I've got reading to do. 



  1. Wow, that's a hell of a reading list. Wish I was taking these courses. I may just try and stumble through a couple of these books along with you....but, gee, it's been a long time since this English lit major has read any stuff like this...(I've got the Tennyson down, but I guess I could brush up!) Have fun!

  2. If you're interested in reading a book from my past reading list, I'd highly recommend one from my first quarter. It was written by the professor who taught the course (and includes a poem from one of my Antioch professors, coincidentally enough).

    The Long Journey Home: Revisioning the Myth of Demeter and Persephone by Dr. Christine Downing. I really enjoyed that book, and it's a real multi-genre treat, which I think you'll find enjoyable. The link leads you to the main page, where the book is currently really expensive. Click on the other formats, though, and you can find some past printings of the paper, used for a reduced price.



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