LOST is a question.
It is an intimate, personal question, posed to you. Scholar, fan, student, average Jill or Joe, literary critic or consumer of culture, the question is independent of any title you apply to yourself, any knowledge or wisdom or fascination you might claim to possess, any theory of which you consider yourself proponent.
Is LOST relevant to you as a human being?
Among the 500-plus large-format (8.5” x 11”) pages of LOST Thought University Edition you will find 32 compelling questions posed by two dozen of the world’s leading authorities in literary analysis, film theory, theatre, art, theology, language, and music—as well as the most recognized names in the LOST blogosphere. With fascinating discussions touching on thousands of novel ideas, you will discover new ways of thinking about the thesis, major themes, character arcs, and original concepts given form and substance in one of television’s greatest artistic achievements.
LOST confronted some of the most fundamental questions of human existence, arriving at answers never before explored in fiction, using storytelling techniques new to television drama. LOST Thought University Edition brings together the most capable and thoughtful voices in academe and the LOST community to ask the probing, revealing questions that shed light on the essential concepts and provide insightful commentary and analysis available nowhere else.
This University Edition of LOST Thought contains eight new essays, some 74 pages of which have never before been published and cannot be read in any other venue. All told, over 300 pages of material were created exclusively for LOST Thought and are available in no other publication. Edited by Pearson Moore, papers were chosen for the anthology not only on the basis of author expertise, but with a keen eye for diversity of opinion, lively prose, depth of analysis, and broad range and high pertinence density of topics. Every paper presents a thought-provoking array of questions guaranteed to stimulate thought, discussion, debate, and a deep appreciation of the artistry of the series.
Scholar or fan, the Island is our destiny. LOST Thought University Edition will bring greater meaning to that destiny than any other companion book, literary guide, or analytical tool. Twenty-three scholars and authors await on the shores of the Island. Grab a backpack, a water bottle, and your laptop or iPad—and get ready for a fascinating adventure. Namaste!
Sarah Clarke Stuart
Amy Bauer, Ph.D.
Cynthia Burkhead, Ph.D.
Delano Freeberg, Ph.D. (Hon.)
Julia Guernsey-Pitchford, Ph.D.
Michelle Lang, Ph.D.
C. David Milles
Antonio Savorelli, Ph.D.
Paul Wright, Ph.D.
Table of Contents
Introduction to the University Edition: The Color Blindness of King George: An Ode to Francis Church 13
Introduction: In the Shadow of Greatness 29
The Culture of Lost
1. Haikus for the Journey 39
2. Culture Disguised as Television 47
3. The Journey Has Just Begun: Building The Transmission 59
4. Chased By Polar Bears 73
5. Accidental Intellectuals: Lost Fandom and Philosophy 83
The Mythology of Lost
6. Alice in Wonderland Gets Lost 127
7. Funny Red Pictures: Egypt and Lost 135
8. The Science of Lost 143
9. Daddy Issues in Lost 161
10. The Mother Image In Lost 169
Faith and Fate in Lost
11. Theological Syncretism in Lost 187
12. Faith Images in Lost 205
13. The Lord Is My Jack Shephard 215
14. Free Will and Determinism in Lost 243
15. Free Will and Narrative Closure in Lost 253
Multi-Dimensionality in Lost
16. Four-Dimensionalism In Lost 263
17. A Village of Odd Couples 271
18. The Demands of the Green Pill: Metadrama in Lost 285
19. Dreams in Lost 301
20. Time Is the Essence 307
21. The Agent: Vincent as First Narrator 317
22. Sayid Jarrah and American Orientalism 327
23. Lost: The Hero’s Journey 335
24. On Paradise Lost and Lost 357
25. The Audacity of the Empty Tomb 365
Postmodernism in Lost
26. Poststructural Or Postmodern? 387
27. Quantum Mechanical Pastiche Pie 391
28. Strange Attraction 407
29. The Cork Stone: A Post-postmodern Thesis of Lost 429
The Structure of Lost
30. Lost and the Power of Story 455
31. Lost As the Neo-Baroque 471
32. Understanding The End 483
Immanent Anticipation: The Enduring Excitement of Lost 495
Featured Artist: Gideon Slife 501
Featured Artist: ArtGUS 505
Glossary of Terms 531