1 Medier og Kultur, The Department of Culture and Identity, Roskilde University2 The Department of Culture and Identity, Roskilde University3 Department of Communication and Arts, Roskilde University
Many angry folks of the 60s counterculture tried to escape the oppression of a disintegrating American dream by replacing social insanity with spiritual insanity. As American history has shown such replacements of systems of thoughts and beliefs often occurred with a transversal movement. For example, the growing interest on the East coast in theosophical issues around the late 60s developed in the West as a visual form. Sacred or secret texts are produced or circulated as visual texts, rather than written texts. From coast to coast the word of God itself is thus disseminated differently. In the East the word is heard and then penned down. In the West the word is seen, and then communicated directly through image. My essay takes a look at one of the central figures in American spiritualism, John Starr Cooke, and his significant contribution to cultural and geographical manifestations of a specific mindset.