The Magazine

Pagans & Moderns

The beauty and monstrosity of the ancient gods

May 28, 2001, Vol. 6, No. 35 • By ALGIS VALIUNAS
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Still, Calasso's Literature and the Gods is a learned, eloquent, and artful piece of work. Drawing upon little-known writings by well-known writers, making astute connections between spiritual life and artistic form, he forces us to think again what the gods were for -- what it meant when they were present, what it meant when they withdrew, and what frightening things the effort to revive them awoke in the modern soul.

Algis Valiunas is a writer in Greenacres, Florida.