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The Alchemist in Fiction: The Master Narrative


Haynes, R, The Alchemist in Fiction: The Master Narrative, The Public Image of Chemistry, World Scientific Publishing Co Pte Ltd, J Schummer, B Bensaude-Vincent, and B Van Tiggelen (ed), United States, pp. 7-36. ISBN 978-981-277-584-9 (2007) [Research Book Chapter]

DOI: doi:10.1142/6636


In western culture, as expressed in fiction and film, the master narrative concerning science and the pursuit of knowledge perpetuates the archetype of the alchemist/scientist as sinister, dangerous, and possibly mad. Like all myths this story may appear simplistic but its recurrence suggests that it embodies complex ideas and suppressed desires and fears that each generation must work through. This chapter explores some of the most influential examples of such characterization, links them to contemporary correlatives of the basic promises of alchemy and suggests reasons for the continuing power of such images.

Item Details

Item Type:Research Book Chapter
Keywords:fiction, film, narrative, science, pursuit of knowledge
Research Division:Language, Communication and Culture
Research Group:Communication and media studies
Research Field:Communication and media studies not elsewhere classified
Objective Division:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Group:Expanding knowledge
Objective Field:Expanding knowledge in language, communication and culture
UTAS Author:Haynes, R (Dr Roslynn Haynes)
ID Code:121752
Year Published:2007
Deposited By:Office of the School of Humanities
Deposited On:2017-10-13
Last Modified:2017-10-13

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