Millennial Mythmaking is a series of essays on what the editors consider to be contemporary mythology, with subjects ranging from Harry Potter to anime to Ghost in the Shell to del Toro (at least as far as Pan’s Labyrinth takes us). The essays were interesting and referenced all the right source material, and my guess is that several will serve as the type of building block work that cultural studies needs done.
- I found the intro essay and the two on Pan’s Labyrinth and Ghost in the Shell to be the most interesting. The intro essay makes the case for studying these kinds of texts as representations of contemporary mythology, while the other two make the case for the two artifacts as ways that current texts incorporate what we think of as myth in order to create the stories we tell ourselves now.
- I would have appreciated a better definition of the mechanism by which this progress work.
- For instance, how does the invocation of ancient myths in these contemporary stories work? Is it a bricolage of sort? A deconstruction?
- I’m also curious what the resonance is – none of the authors in here accuse their audiences of not knowing history, so is the assumption that modern audiences understand these connections based on their own cultural knowledge? Are these features something that we’re hard-wired with, as long as the texts hit the right notes?
- I also felt that a bit of an explanation of the actual mechanism they see the monomyth working through (now at least) would have been useful.