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Archetypes of Desire in Modern Literature, Film and Art

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Organizer: Lily Li

Co-Organizer: Kwok-kan Tam

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Archetypes of Desire abound in the myths and literatures of all cultures. Though often associated with Eros, as in ancient fertility and sex goddesses, Desire may focus on a variety of objects, especially in the increasingly diverse and multifaceted literature and art of the modern world.  Carl Jung’s list of archetypes has been expanded by those who practice archetypal analysis, but the inventive imagination of writers and artists continues to offer ever new and challenging archetypal figures and images as the human psyche unveils itself in each new generation of literature and life.  This panel offers discussions of modern archetypes of the multifarious desires inherent in the characters, images, plots, and patterns of modern literature, cinema and art, with the aim of broadening the iconic spectrum of Desire in national and/or transnational contexts.  These presentations are not confined to the basic archetypes of psychoanalytic tradition (the Jungian list, etc.), but identify and explore new and original types, symbols, figures, or narrative innovations in modern literature, film, or art, Western or Non-western.  Whether such items point to new and different desires or reflect new forms of old and familiar desires is a judgment made by each contributor.

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