This talk has already happened.
The Dragon: Making Sense Of A World Wide Myth
Tuesday, April 16, 2019 - 18:45
Everyone is familiar with the mythical motif of the Dragon. In myths and fairy tales across the world, we find different versions of a snake-like, coiling creature which connects earth and sky, dwells in water, breathes fire and has a particular fondness for young maidens. In this talk, Chris will be proposing a revolutionary new way of decoding dragon myths. The dragon has nothing to do with folk memories of dinosaurs. Instead, it belongs to the sphere of human ritual, particularly initiation ritual. The dragon is a way of representing matrilineal kinship and women's solidarity through menstrual synchrony, a social force often depicted negatively under conditions of patriarchy. Some of the most persuasive evidence for this new interpretation comes from Aboriginal Australia, where stories about a Rainbow Snake are not disembodied myths but are still acted out in ritual performance.
More about Chris Knight
Evening talk information
Our evening talks include discussion, are free and open to all.
Next evening class
Winning an argument with the Pope would be difficult unless you agreed in advance about central postulates of Catholic doctrine such as virgin birth, original sin and the evils of birth control. In this lecture, Chris Knight tells the story of his unsuccessful attempts to argue against the reigning master of modern linguistics, Noam Chomsky. When Knight published his recent book, 'Decoding Chomsky', he was hoping to shift the ground in our scientific understanding of language, arguing for its intrinsically social nature. But experience has shown that arguing with an infallible figure is not so easy, even when the master's doctrines make no sense.