Hierophany as Authorial Strategy in Gaiman and Deitch
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This research applies the Eliade’s distinctions between sacred and profane time and space to the relationships among a writer, his narrative voices, and his works, positing the purpose of all modern literary and artistic productions to provide order to an otherwise homogenous and undifferentiated world; that is, to provide meaning by providing points of orientation that connect to transcendent or “sacred” modes of being. Neil Gaiman’s “Distant Mirrors” series of comic books serve as models for these hierophanies and reveal the problems inherent to the modern hierophany. His A Game of You suggests the fluid nature of the authorial stance, specifically undermining the concept of authorial control. Dietch’s The Search for Smilin’ Ed exploits the overt weaknesses of authorial control to provide his narrative voices with greater autonomy, subverting the possibility of reductive readings of his text and thus avoiding the profanity of modern criticism.