The Bicameral Mind in Neil Gaiman's "American Gods"

Discussion of the influence of Jaynes's theory on works of fiction, film, and in popular culture.
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The Bicameral Mind in Neil Gaiman's "American Gods"

Post by Moderator » Wed Jul 05, 2017 4:26 pm

Neil Gaiman's book American Gods alludes to Julian Jaynes's theory:

"... And then there are the gods [in Herodotus]. Some guy is running back to report on the outcome of a battle and he's running and running, and he sees Pan in a glade. And Pan says, 'Tell them to build me a temple here.' So he says okay, and runs the rest of the way back. And he reports the battle news, and then says, 'Oh and by the way, Pan wants you to build a temple.' It's really matter-of-fact, you know?"

"So there are stories with gods in them. What are you trying to say? That these guys had hallucinations?"

...

"I read some book about brains," she said. "My roommate had it and she kept waving it around. It was like, how five thousand years ago the lobes of the brain fused and before that people thought when the right lobe of the brain said anything it was the voice of some gods telling them what to do. ..." (p. 151)

I haven't been watching the show, does anyone know if this reference is also in the Starz series or is it only in Neil Gaiman's book?

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