"[Calasso's] flow of associations leaves you feeling not out of your depth, but smarter and better read." The New York Times Book Review
The eighth part of Roberto Calasso’s monumental series on the primal forces of civilization
The eighth part of Roberto Calasso’s singular work in progress that began in 1983 with The Ruin of Kasch, The Celestial Hunter is an inspired and provocative exploration of mankind’s relationship with myth, the divine, and the idea of transformation.
There was a time, even before prehistory, when man was simply a defenseless animal. The gods he worshiped took the form of other beasts or were the patterns of the stars he saw above him each night in the sky, which he transformed into figures and around which he created stories. Soon, however, man learned to imitate the animals that attacked him and he became a hunter. This transformation, Calasso posits, from defenseless victim to hunter was a key moment, the first step on man’s ascendance to power. Suddenly the notion of the hunter became fundamental. It would be developed over thousands of years through the figures that became central to Greek mythology, including the constellations. Among them was Orion, the celestial hunter, and his dog, Sirius.
Vivid and strikingly original, and expertly translated from the Italian by Richard Dixon, The Celestial Hunter traces how man created the divine myths that would become the cornerstones of Western civilization. As Calasso demonstrates, the repercussions of these ideas would echo through history, from Paleolithic to modern times. And they would be the product of one thing: the human mind.
|Publisher:||Farrar, Straus and Giroux|
|Product dimensions:||6.10(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.40(d)|
About the Author
Table of Contents
I In the Time of the Great Raven 1
II The Mistress of the Animals 29
III The Gold-Tipped Javelin 55
IV The Brief Age of Heroes 73
V Sages and Predators 95
VI Zeus's Last Night on Earth 157
VII Spuma Fui 171
VIII Nocturnal Council 201
IX The Night of the Hermocopids 241
X The Contemplator 253
XI Statues 293
XII O Egypt, Egypt … 311
XIII The Divine Before the Gods 335
XIV Return to Eleusis 359