Discipline: Literature

Joseph Campbell

Discipline: Literature
Region: New York, NY
MacDowell Fellowships: 1929
More: www.jcf.org
From an early age, Joseph Campbell (1904–1987) was fascinated by Native American culture, connecting its symbols and stories to those of his family’s Roman Catholic faith. After earning a B.A. from Columbia (1925) and receiving an M.A. (1927) for his work in Arthurian studies, Joe won a Proudfit Traveling Fellowship to continue his studies at the University of Paris (1927–28). He then traveled to Germany to resume his studies at the University of Munich (1928–29), where he learned of the modernists who would significantly influence his work. In 1932, he sold his first short story; the next year he spent reading and writing in an isolated cottage. In 1934, he accepted a position in the literature department at Sarah Lawrence College, a post he would retain for 38 years. His first book, The Hero with a Thousand Faces (Bollingen Series XVII: 1949), was published to acclaim and brought him the first of numerous awards and honors—the National Institute of Arts and Letters Award for Contributions to Creative Literature. Campbell authored dozens of articles and numerous other books, including The Masks of God: Primitive Mythology (Vol. 1: 1959); Oriental Mythology (Vol. 2: 1962); Occidental Mythology (Vol. 3: 1964); Creative Mythology (Vol. 4: 1968); The Flight of the Wild Gander: Explorations in the Mythological Dimension (1969); Myths to Live By (1972); The Mythic Image (1974); The Inner Reaches of Outer Space: Metaphor as Myth and as Religion (1986); and five books in his unfinished four-volume, multipart Historical Atlas of World Mythology (1983–87). He was also a prolific editor but, even more notably, Campbell was a natural orator and gave well-attended lectures throughout the United States for many years. In 1985, he was awarded the National Arts Club Gold Medal of Honor in Literature.



Joseph Campbell worked in the Wood studio.

Wood Studio, given to the residency program by Mrs. Frederick Trevor Hill, was completed in 1913 in memory of Mrs. Hill’s mother, Helen Ogden Wood. Like Schelling Studio, the building is sided with large, overlapping pieces of hemlock bark. When the studio was renovated in 1995, MacDowell staff researched the origins of this unusual building material and…

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