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Joseph Campbell
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Author
    (March 26, 1904-October 30, 1987)
    Born in White Plains, New York
    Professor at Sarah Lawrence College (1934-72)
    Wrote 'A Skeleton Key to Finnegan's Wake' (1944), 'The Hero with a Thousand Faces' (1949), 'The Masks of God' (1959-68) and 'Myths to Live By' (1972)
    Interviewed by Bill Moyers in the PBS documentary 'The Power of Myth' (1988)
    He decided not to get his doctorate after his advisers refused to let him study Sanskrit and Modern Art in addition to Medieval Literature.
    He married one of his students.
    His idea of the 'monomyth' was parodied by Kurt Vonnegut as the 'man in the hole' theory: 'The hero gets into trouble. The hero gets out of trouble.'
    After his death, critic Brendan Gill accused him of anti-semitism.
    He mastered French and German in only a few months of study.
    Newsweek noted, 'Campbell has become one of the rarest of intellectuals in American life: a serious thinker who has been embraced by the popular culture.'
    George Lucas said 'Star Wars' was shaped by the ideas in 'The Hero with a Thousand Faces.'
    Biographers Stephen and Robin Larsen denied he was anti-semitic, writing 'Campbell did not belong to any organization that condoned racial or social bias, nor do we know of any other way in which he endorsed such viewpoints.'

Credit: C. Fishel


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