Musings & Meditations

Wolf Song

Posted in Art & Society, Books, Mythology and Folklore, Sexuality and Culture, Werewolves by Pam Keesey on April 2, 2009

Poking around the ’net, I found this interesting piece on a site dedicated to “an understanding of the wolf, its natural, history, its varied relation to humans throughout the ages, and its role as a major symbol in folklore, myth, legend, art and religion, through education, science and public awareness.”

Among other things, they have a commentary on my book, Women Who Run with the Werewolves, and its inspiration, Women Who Run with the Wolves.

I’m particularly please with how they summarize my introduction to Women Who Run with the Werewolves:

This article is certainly not suggesting that modern women wish to go out and devour those who have wronged them in the past, but it does suggest that the use of both the wolf as well as the wolf-human hybrid monster can be transformed into tools of reflection on women’s contemporary social condition. A huge part of the appeal, again, is the simple escape from constricting ties. Commitments to work, family, friends, and society at large are not monstrous and they do not have to be domineering, yet a key feature of modern feminism lay in emphasizing the emotional need to feel in control, to be wild and free, to single-handedly determine the course of one’s own path. This is why many women choose to run with the wolves, as well as with the werewolves; the important part is the ability to choose itself.

The ability to choose. The power to choose. Yes, it’s all about empowerment.

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The Paradox of Reality

Posted in Books, Spirituality by Pam Keesey on February 2, 2009

The towering paradox that religion confronts us with is its insistence that the opposites that texture the world we normally experience are, when rightly understood, actually one.

—Huston Smith, Buddhism: A Concise Introduction

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Posted in Books, Spirituality by Pam Keesey on October 17, 2008

Right now, human beings as a mass, have a gruesome appetite for what they call ‘real,’ whether it’s Reality TV or the kind of plodding fiction that only works as low-grade documentary, or at the better end, the factual programmes and biographies and ‘true life’ accounts that occupy the space where imagination used to sit.
     Such a phenomenon points to a terror of the inner life, of the sublime, of the poetic, of the non-material, of the contemplative.

Weight, Jeannette Winterson

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Autobiography is not important

Posted in Books by Pam Keesey on October 16, 2008

Autobiography is not important. Authenticity is important. The writer must fire herself through the text, be the molten stuff that welds together disparate elements. I believe there is always exposure, vulnerability, in the writing process, which is not to say it is either confessional or memoir. It is real.

Weight, Jeanette Winterson

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The Journey of Crazy Horse

Posted in Books by Pam Keesey on October 2, 2008

I don’t remember how old I was the first time we went to the Black Hills. Eleven, perhaps; maybe twelve. And construction — if you can call it that — had already started on the memorial to Crazy Horse. At the time, it was little more than an expanse of rock, flattened across the top, with a hole blasted through just below.

I’ve often thought of Crazy Horse since then, even just in passing, as there’s an annual Crazy Horse fundraising even that friends of mine attend every year. I’ve had even more reason to think of him reading The Journey of Crazy Horse: A Lakota History.

Written by Joseph M. Marshall III, a Lakota Sioux historian, The Journey of Crazy Horse is striking in it’s style. Very few “facts” are known about the life of Crazy Horse. However, Marshall, who was raised on the Rosebud Sioux Indian Reservation, grew up just two generations removed from people who had known or known of Crazy Horse since childhood. Storytelling was itself the historical record. Marshall has collected these stories, combined them with documented historical fact, and produced a biography that is not only rich in cultural context and historical detail, but also imbued with a culture and tradition of storytelling that makes The Journey of Crazy Horse even more compelling not only as a biography, but also as a cultural artifact.

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