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Light Come Shining: The Transformations of Bob Dylan

3.19  ·  Rating details ·  52 ratings  ·  15 reviews
Bob Dylan is the prince of self-reinvention and deflection. Whether it's the folkies of Greenwich Village, the student movement of the 1960s and 1970s, Born Again Christians, the Chabad Lubavitch community, or English Department postmodernists, specific intellectual and sociopolitical groups have repeatedly claimed Bob Dylan as their spokesperson. But in the words of filmm ...more
Hardcover, 232 pages
Published January 13th 2017 by Oxford University Press, USA
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Brent McCulley
Feb 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: biography
A bit repetitive and I don't buy all his conclusions, but interesting pschobiography and worth reading.
Todd Stockslager
May 11, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: biography
Review title: Inventing Dylan

Spoiler alert: The best part of this short "psychobiography" comes in a quote from another author on nearly the last page:
Dylan has invented himself. He's made himself up from scratch. . . . . Dylan is an invention of this own mind. The point isn't to figure him out but to take him in. He's not the first one to have invented himself, but he's the first one to have invented Bob Dylan. (p. 190)

McCarron is a doctor of psychology, and uses words like "generativity", "nar
Mar 17, 2020 rated it liked it
This psycho-biography, like any psychology, makes some strong claims without any clear authority for interpretation. But it is nice to see some form of teleology via Ricouer and a more rounded view of human persons. Personhood cannot be collapsed into tidy rationalist boxes of reason and unreason. McCarron knows, with Jung, that our dark sides and shadows can shine as much light about us as our brighter sides. He takes us through these shadowy character creations and mythic spins, for good or il ...more
Oct 24, 2016 rated it did not like it
*ARC provided by NetGalley in exchange for a honest review, thanks again*

I can't really put into words the feelings I have right now. It's sort of disappointment mixed with confusion. Let's start off with - I did not like this book. I did not.
The reason I got this book was that I was kind of interested in Dylan. But now I understand that I should stick to liking him in my own way.

The arguments presented felt entirely one sided and not up for debate and the the whole idea of the book felt not
Mike Fendrich
Jun 17, 2017 rated it liked it
You know, I have been listening to Dylan's music since high school (has it been that long) and have long admired his music. I have read a few biographies of him with interest as I did live through many of the events that marked his life. In 1974 when he came out with "Blood on the Tracks" I shared his experience of remembering love in the past, looking forward to love in the future but rarely experiencing love in the present. I became a Christian in 1979 shortly after "Slow Train Ciming" came ou ...more
Jun 26, 2017 rated it liked it
I love Dylan's music, which moved my girlfriend to buy me this psychoanalytical book on perhaps the most cryptic, impactful musician in history. The read didn't do much for me save to confirm that I am less interested in Dylan as a person or as an idea than I am about Dylan as only embodiment of lyrics and music that inspire me. The author's perspective was interesting yet, despite being clothed in fancy jargon, relatively shallow in its insight. I'd not recommend the book to any Dylan lover and ...more
David Leeds
May 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
"Light Come Shining" is a fascinating look at one of 20th-century America's most fascinating pop culture icons. It is thoroughly researched and very thoughtful, yet still accessible for those, like myself, who pick up the book with little prior experience with Dylanology or psychology. On that note, I would definitely recommend this book to anyone interested in the field of psychobiography. However, this book would also make an insightful supplement to the research of seasoned, hard-core Dylan f ...more
Simon Sweetman
Jul 06, 2017 rated it liked it
Nice idea, not entirely well executed - several dates are wrong which is an obvious point of irritation and gives across the picture that McCarron simply doesn't know his subject well enough; why then should be believe any of the 'insights' of this "psychobiography"? The aims of the book are well established though if not always well executed.
Aaron Novak
Mar 02, 2018 rated it liked it
My first psychobiography.

This one on Bob Dylan's transfigurations and destiny. How the Atomic Age and the radio were the catalysts for Dylan's pattern of self-reinvention. Periods of insightfulness, but a bit laden with psychology vernacular for me.

For serious Dylanologists only.
Oct 20, 2016 rated it it was ok
Although it has many information and assumes a particular angle, it forces into conclusions without necessarily having all the reasons to do so. It shows at a great extent the limits of academic investigations into pop-culture but also of the specific method used by the author.
Disclaimer: Book offered by the publisher in exchange of an honest review
Jan 05, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: ginib
If you're a Dylan follower or just curious this book might be what you want. Psychobiography? A new term for me. Didn't exist back when I was taking psychology courses. It's an interesting way to approach a biography though and that kept me reading. What makes a person choose his direction that ends up being his biography?

I am aware that the reviews for this book haven't been stellar, and after reading it I can understand that since the author stops and explains what he's doing at every turn. D
Feb 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
This book does bring something new and important to the over-crowded world of Dylan studies: psychobiography. Highly recommended for those (like me) who persist in their desire to get a handle on this most enigmatic of contemporary geniuses.
Just re-read for class; gleaned even more the second time around.
Nov 15, 2016 rated it it was amazing
His other books such as Three New York Poets, were fairly mediocre, but this one is something special.
David Gray
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rated it it was ok
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