An aphorism is nothing else but the slightest
form of writing raised to the highest level of expressive communication. Carl William Brown





Myth is neither a lie nor a confession: it is an inflexion.


Roland Barthes (1915-1980, French semiologist)


Myth is the hidden part of every story, the buried part, the region that is still unexplored because there are as yet no words to enable us to get there. Myth is nourished by silence as well as by words.


Italo Calvino (1923-1985, Cuban writer, essayist, journalist)


Myths are public dreams, dreams are private myths.


Joseph Campbell (1904-1987, American scholar, writer, teacher)


It is a myth, not a mandate; a fable, not a logic, and symbol rather than a reason by which men are moved.


Irwin Edman


A myth is a religion in which no one any longer believes.


James Feibleman


There is nothing truer than myth: history, in its attempt to "realize" myth, distorts it, stops halfway; when history claims to have "succeeded," this is nothing but humbug and mystification. Everything we dream is "realizable." Reality does not have to be: it is simply what it is.


Eugene Ionesco (1912-1994, Romanian-born French playwright)


Myth is an attempt to narrate a whole human experience, of which the purpose is too deep, going too deep in the blood and soul, for mental explanation or description.


D. H. Lawrence (1885-1930, British author)


I therefore claim to show, not how men think in myths, but how myths operate in men's minds without their being aware of the fact.


Claude Levi-Strauss (1908-, French anthropologist)


It is a sure sign that a culture has reached a dead end when it is no longer intrigued by its myths.


Greil Marcus (1945-, American rock journalist)


Without myth, every culture would lose its healthy creative power.


Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900, German philosopher)


The primary function of myth is to validate an existing social order. Myth enshrines conservative social values, raising tradition on a pedestal. It expresses and confirms, rather than explains or questions, the sources of cultural attitudes and values. Because myth anchors the present in the past it is a sociological charter for a future society which is an exact replica of the present one.


Ann Oakley (1944-, British sociologist, author)


Myths which are believed in tend to become true.


George Orwell (1903-1950, British author, "Animal Farm")


Sometimes legends make reality, and become more useful than the facts.


Salman Rushdie (1948-, Indian-born British author)


All the great things have been denied and we live in an intricacy of new and local mythologies, political, economic, poetic, which are asserted with an ever-enlarging incoherence.


Wallace Stevens (1879-1955, American poet)


The poets were not alone in sanctioning myths, for long before the poets the states and the lawmakers had sanctioned them as a useful expedient. They needed to control the people by superstitious fears, and these cannot be aroused without myths and marvels.


Mikhail Strabo


Myths and legends die hard in America. We love them for the extra dimension they provide, the illusion of near-infinite possibility to erase the narrow confines of most men's reality. Weird heroes and mould-breaking champions exist as living proof to those who need it that the tyranny of "the rat race" is not yet final.


Hunter S. Thompson (1939-, American journalist)


One may as well preach a respectable mythology as anything else.


Mrs. Humphrey Ward (1851-1920, British novelist)


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