The Rehabilitation of Myth: Vico's 'New Science'

The Rehabilitation of Myth: Vico's 'New Science'

by Joseph Mali

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Overview

The Rehabilitation of Myth: Vico's 'New Science' by Joseph Mali

In this important essay, Joseph Mali argues that Vico's New Science must be interpreted according to Vico's own clues and rules of interpretation, principally his claim that the 'master-key' of his New Science is the discovery of myth. Following this lead Mali shows how Vico came to forge his new scientific theories about the mythopoeic constitution of consciousness, society, and history by reappraising, or 'rehabilitating' the ancient and primitive mythical traditions which still persist in modern times. He further relates Vico's radical redefinition of these traditions as the 'true narrations' of all religious, social, and political practices in the 'civil world' to his unique historical depiction of Western civilisation as evolving in a-rational and cyclical motions. On this account, Mali elaborates the wider, distinctly 'revisionist', implications of Vico's New Science for the modern human sciences. He argues that inasmuch as the New Science exposed the linguistic and other cultural systems of the modern world as being essentially mythopoeic, it challenges not only the Christian and Enlightenment ideologies of progress in his time, but also the main cultural ideologies of our time.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780521893275
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Publication date: 05/02/2002
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 292
Product dimensions: 6.14(w) x 9.21(h) x 0.75(d)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements; A note on Vico's text; Introduction; 1. The revision of science; 2. The revision of civilization; 3. The revision of mythology; 4. The revision of history; Conclusion; Index.

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