The Raw and the Cooked
The peculiarity of this edition is that it has no subject. In the first place, it is restricted to the study of one myth. And yet in order to do so it must assimilate the subject matter of a hundred others. I am anxious to keep within a clearly defined moment in time. That said, I cannot prevent this book from taking on the appearance of a general treatise on mythology. In other words, this book may well create more myths than it dispels.
I must admit that this generative effect does not alarm me. Rather it seems to be a sign that I have succeeded in depicting certain fundamental properties of my subject. This is thanks to a plan and a method that were not so much chosen by me as forced upon me by the nature of the material. The constant recurrence of the same themes expresses this ineffable mixture of persistence and powerlessness. Mythology has no interest in definite beginnings or endings. Mythology never develops any theme to completion; there is always something left unfinished.
Therefore, it follows that an edition based on myths is itself a kind of myth. If The Raw and the Cooked has any unity, that unity will only appear behind or beyond this edition, and, in the best hypothesis, will only become reality in the mind of the reader.
For related content see Véritablement