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Foreword In October of 1987, I had to make a rush business trip to Toronto. After I landed at Pearson Airport, I ran for the first taxi in line. From the rear seat, I could see that the driver wore a tattered mackinaw and a wool cap with earflaps pulled down over wisps of straggly hair. In the mirror, I could see a crusty, days-old beard. As he pulled away from the curb, he suddenly braked, turned to me, and spoke with urgency: ‘‘Did you hear the news?’’ I sucked in some cold air. ‘‘No, what?’’ ‘‘Awful. The Hang Seng stock index went down nine percent this morning.’’ In that instant, I knew the long-awaited era of global communications had actually been born. All the world, rich and poor, was fixated on the collapse of the financial markets in real time. And there was real worry in the cabby’s eyes, which reflected fears around the world. What was the story? No one seemed to understand why the markets were in free fall. What did it mean, this October collapse? Neither President Reagan, nor Margaret Thatcher, nor the secretaries of the treasury or exchequer, nor any other leader of reputation had stood up to tell us what the story was. So, in the absence of a new story, millions of people fell back on the last usable story: the stock market collapse of October 1929. And the quotes chased each other down and down. Eventually, after scooping the cream out of millions of portfolios, the markets bottomed out, well above depression levels, because it wasn’t actually 1929 all over again. Today, as I write in another October, markets are roiling as never before. Brands are being born faster than ever before. The media are glutted with much more data, news, entertainment, and advertising than they were 13 years ago. Without a good ‘‘story’’ for us to latch onto, to give meaning to the message, most of it slides by, vaguely seen or heard, but surely not absorbed. vii

Copyright 2001 Margaret Mark and Carol S. Pearson. Click Here for Terms of Use.

Profile for Lewis Lafontaine

Mack, Margaret - Hero and Outlaw Archetype  

Mack, Margaret - Hero and Outlaw Archetype