The art journal Escape Into Life recently ran the full introduction to an upcoming book, The Immanence of Myth. For my part, it picks up where I left off in Generation Hex (Disinfo). I hope you enjoy:
Myths and legends die hard in America.
We love them for the extra dimension they provide,
the illusion of near-infinite possibility
to erase the narrow confines of most men’s reality. –Hunter S. Thompson
Myth is immanent. Myth is alive.
I know the idea of living myth is kind of hard to swallow at first. We think, and this thought is a myth too, that thoughts cannot be alive. What does it mean for myth to be immanent, let alone alive? What is myth, really? That’s where this book began, and I think that — now that it is being prepared for publication — that it has opened up the floor for the discussion of these ideas, more than having proven any of them, which is as it should be.
Where did it begin? Much of the material I first wrote for this book expands on the ideas I first presented in Living the Myth, my contribution to the Generation Hex anthology, published by Disinformation Press in 2005. The idea of “living myth” implies at once two interpretations: that myth is in some way alive, and that we can live it. These two are, to use a cliché, like two sides of a coin.
(Read full article on Escape Into Life.)
This investigation is the type of thing that began as a side-note to the creative work that I was doing, and has since become almost an obsession. I intend to keep up the investigation of modern myth both on the side of the same name, and here on Disinfo, focusing here more of course on how these things crop up in current events, technology, economics, etc.
Thanks to them for running this, and to you for coming along for the ride. -J