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The Changing Guise of Myths

Philosophical Essays

Series:

Andrzej Leder

Each of us, waking in the morning, has to open the world we have woken into. We have to endow meaning to people, objects and tasks, have to secure a place in the chaos of time passing. When opening their eyes during the palpable reality of a dream, a person will dream beyond the dream, will carry over meanings and experiences from one sphere to another. The author of these collected essays puts various strategies under the microscope which we deploy to make the world material, analyzing the mythical structures we use for this purpose – interpreting anew their changing guise in the contemporary. Being witness to the changing material desert of post-Soviet Eastern Europe transforming into the over-saturated jungle of modern capitalism, he offers a unique window into the seemingly obvious – only to unveil its manifold human aspects of the hidden.

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1. The question of longevity... ............................................................................ 7 The changing guise of myths ................................................................................ 7 Women, men and Plato ....................................................................................... 11 The question of longevity... ................................................................................ 16 Will men survive? ............................................................................................... 18 Curriculum vitae ................................................................................................. 21 Cows ................................................................................................................... 23 Chopsticks and fork ............................................................................................ 25 The odds of risk .................................................................................................. 28 Workaholic .......................................................................................................... 31 The remote control: an odyssey .......................................................................... 34 Weather forecast ................................................................................................. 36 Plague .................................................................................................................. 38 At the windowpane ............................................................................................. 40 2. Melancholies and rituals .............................................................................. 45 Melancholies and rituals ..................................................................................... 45 On cruelty ........................................................................................................... 47 On the sense of guilt ........................................................................................... 49 On sorrow ........................................................................................................... 51 On fear ................................................................................................................ 54 On anxiety ........................................................................................................... 56 On envy ............................................................................................................... 62 On disquiet .......................................................................................................... 65 On flattery ........................................................................................................... 69 On respect or neo-cannibalism ........................................................................... 71 On wonderment ................................................................................................... 73 On smell .............................................................................................................. 76 From beyond the grave ....................................................................................... 78 The right to hatred ............................................................................................... 80 On cruelty, a reprease ......................................................................................... 82 3. The war of icons ............................................................................................ 87 Catwalk ............................................................................................................... 87 Hierophany, or fashion according to pre-modern times ..................................... 88 6 The changing guise of myths Time, or fashion according to modernity ............................................................ 91 The war of the iconoclasts and iconodules ......................................................... 94 Palmers – voluptuous ads ................................................................................. 102 The mall ............................................................................................................ 103 Metro ................................................................................................................. 106 Stadium ............................................................................................................. 109 Street Haiku ...................................................................................................... 112 Titanic ............................................................................................................... 114 Let us love pop culture ...................................................................................... 118 The question of chaos ....................................................................................... 121 The cat and spider – where lieth force? ............................................................ 126

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