The Electric Koolaid Acid Test, Tom Wolf
The Hero With a Thousand Faces, Joseph Campbell
On the Road, Jack Kerouac
Moby Dick, Herman Melville
Frankenstein, Mary Shelley
Belle Canto, Ann Patchett
Crime and Punishment, Fyodor Dostoyevsky
Slaughterhouse-Five, Kurt Vonnegut
A Prayer for Owen Meany, John Irving
The Odyssey, Homer
No single book has been more influential in the way in which I interpret things than The Hero With a Thousand Faces. In reviewing the books on my list, and even the books I was forced to remove, each of them could be interpreted by Campbell’s monomythic cycle. I was astounded when I discovered Campbell in graduate school in anthropology and incredulously wondered why this wasn’t required reading by every anthropologist. Luckily my persistence (whining) caused one kind professor to allow me to create three separate independent study classes to indulge my curiosity. Everything book I’ve read since, every church service I’ve attended, every life trial that I’ve experienced has been viewed through my interpretive lens of the hero’s cycle.
I am currently hoping that I come out on the victorious side of the cycle as the Manager of Exhibits at the the Memphis Pink Palace Museum. I have been lucky to have been the Chief Curator of the Wonders Series and the Director of the Mississippi River Museum.