Tag Archives: modern culture

The Archetype of Initiation

The Archetype of Initiation: Sacred Space, Ritual Process, and Personal Transformation, lectures and essays by Robert L Moore, edited by Max J Havlick Jr, a 2001 paperback published through Xlibris, is part of the collection at the Reading Room.

Robert L Moore Max J Havlick Jr The Archetype of Initiation

“This book urges contemporary healers to utilize premodern tribal principles of sacred space and ritual process long considered lost or inaccessible to modern culture. Properly prepared ‘ritual elders’ can guide people through ritual steps from (a) the challenge of a life-crisis, into (b) sacred space and time for needed reorganization, and then into (c) a newly transformed personal and social world. These steps derive from key concepts in the scholarship of Arnold van Gennep, Mircea Eliade, Joseph Campbell, and Victor Turner, reformulated with new insights from extensive field research and psychoanalytic practice.” — back cover

The Secret Museum

Hermetic Library fellow T Polyphilus reviews The Secret Museum: Pornography in Modern Culture by Walter Kendrick, designed by Steve Renick, from University of California Press.

Walter Kendrick Steve Renick The Secre Museum from University of California Press

Kendrick treats the history of the concept of pornography from its origins in the Enlightenment period to the “post-pornographic era” of the late 20th century. A central piece of his argument concerns the origins and development of the “Young Person” (a term taken from Dickens) who constitutes the hypothesized and hypostasized audience to be sequestered from pornography. It also treats the bifurcation of “pornography” and “art,” and the emergent and then vanishing textuality of pornography.

The chronology of the original book ends with the Meese Commission report of 1986, and the author’s hope that it spelled a final denoument of the turmoil over pornography in US society. The 1996 afterword opens onto the vista of the Internet, and the renewed conflicts and ambivalence in the American pornographic milieu.

Although furnished with a scholarly apparatus, this book is a lucid, speedy read. It doesn’t have any salacious content; it is written to provoke reflections rather than erections! [via]


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