Myth Reading Group
Thursday 25 January
12.00-1.30pm in Room 3.411
We are very pleased to announce that Dr Leon Burnett, founding and former Director of the Centre for Myth Studies, opens our discussion of Trees & Forests with a session on Alejo Carpentier’s The Lost Steps
The material for the first meeting of the Myth Reading Group this term is taken from Chapter Four of Alejo Carpentier’s novel, The Lost Steps (1953), a reverse Odyssey which invokes European archetypes such as Prometheus and Faust yet remains resolutely Latin American in technique and temperament.
In it, the first-person narrator undertakes a journey into the interior of a South American jungle, retracing the path of humankind in a series of steps to its point of origin: the world of contemporary civilisation is displaced by a succession of receding historical vistas, which are, in their turn, supplanted by what one may categorise as the “mythical sublime” – marvellous landscapes of increasing strangeness that seem to negate time itself.
Los Pasos Perdidos appeared in 1953 and the English translation was first published by Victor Gollancz in 1956.