Rodney's Reviews > The White Goddess: A Historical Grammar of Poetic Myth

The White Goddess by Robert Graves
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's review
Dec 04, 13

bookshelves: poetry
Read in June, 2004

O.K., so Graves was dead wrong about the Celts. Still, the "White Goddess" thesis--that patriarchal invaders suppressed the mother-goddess religions of the Aegean and Ancient Near East, traces of which managed to survive in Europe, especially in the minstrel lore of Ireland and Wales--is thanks to Graves now part and parcel of the modern. The real fun of the book isn't so much in its truth as the getting there: a waterslide ride of educated guessing, crossword logic, and speculative buccaneering that reads more like a postmodern novel than straight up scholarship. Graves's is the grandmammy of all conspiracy theories, setting the stage for Pynchon & Eco and us.
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message 1: by Catherine (last edited Feb 15, 2008 06:21PM) (new) - added it

Catherine Meng Thanks for this insight Rodney. The boyfriend has been bugging me to read this for years. He's already bought me 2 copies & I expect there will be more to come if I don't tackle it soon. I started it a few months ago at 7 a.m. & was instantly lost, but I'm gonna try again soon....'cause I'm angling to become the grandaddy of conspiracy theories someday.

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