November 9-10, 1984: Joseph Campbell

Lecture: Mythological Beginnings 

This will be a slide-illustrated lecture reviewing the earliest signs of development of ritual and myth out of the powers, needs, and expectations of the maturing human body in its two aspects, female and male. The evening will open with a glance at the first signs of an evolving human (as distinct from animal) species. The primary stages of an expanding realization of the potentialities of human experience and fulfillment will then be illustrated by the art of the Paleolithic caves. The lecture will conclude with an example of the symbolic forms of a living mythology (the Navaho) to the healing and harmonization of disordered lives.

Workshop: The Hero Journey, 1984

In a world oriented rather to immediate economic and social interests than to our biologically-based potentialities of holistic enlightenment and fulfillment, the first task of the individual must be to recognize, appreciate, and follow the instructing voice from within his or her own nature. This is the adventure symbolized in the universally known myth and associated ceremonials of THE HERO JOURNEY. A consideration and open discussion of the understanding and application of those symbols today, in the United States will be the topic of this seminar. What has become of the language of symbols? How can you or I find or recover through that language our own truth?


Joseph Campbell, internationally known scholar/author/lecturer in mythology was educated at Columbia University, the University of Paris and the University of Munich. He is Professor Emeritus of Literature at Sarah Lawrence College where he was a member of the Literature Department from 1934 to 1972. He has been awarded the Hofstra Distinguished Scholar Award (1973) and an Honorary Doctorate in Humane Letters from Pratt Institute (1976). He is currently writing volume two of Historical Atlas of World Mythology. Volume One of the series was published in the fall of 1983-The Way of the Animal Powers.

Mythological Beginnings