By Karen Pinkus
How do we account, in a rigorous approach, for alchemy's ubiquity? we expect of alchemy because the transformation of a base fabric (usually lead) into gold, yet "alchemy" is a be aware in extensive circulate in daily life, referred to as upon to satisfy a metaphoric responsibility because the magical transformation of fabrics. virtually each tradition and time has had a few kind of alchemy. This publication appears at alchemy, now not at anybody specific example alongside the historic timeline, now not as a tradition or idea, no longer as a method of redemption, yet as a theoretical challenge, associated with genuine gold and actual creation on the planet. What emerges because the least universal denominator or "intensive estate" of alchemy is ambivalence, the very unlikely and paradoxical coexistence of 2 incompatible components. Alchemical Mercury strikes from antiquity, throughout the golden age of alchemy within the Dutch 17th century, to conceptual artwork, to replacement fuels, preventing to imagine with writers akin to Dante, Goethe, Hoffmann, the Grimm Brothers, George Eliot, and Marx. Eclectic and wide-ranging, this is often the 1st research to think about alchemy when it comes to literary and visible conception in a complete means.