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It should not surprise anyone, at this point, if we argue that Arnold Schwarzenegger is, for us, the ultimate dream-character. He has the ability to morph himself through a variety of cultural identities and to iconicize himself as a living symbol. His many films provide a metaphorical patchwork of cultural referents. His numerous incarnations as fitness guru, politician, international investor and enterpreneur, actor, famous father and husband, restaurateur , and his own survival of several physical maladies all make Schwarzenegger seem larger, and different, than lifean image from a chaotic dream. If our dreams are the site of an essential energy conversion where 'ignorant' cells turn into smart (or creative) cell groups" (States 1993: 5), then we need to face the fact that it is Arnold Schwarzenegger who has become our teacher, the Kindergarten Cop of our narrative lives.
In Jorge Luis Borges well-known story, The Circular Ruins, a man sets out to dream a manperhaps a saviorinto existence. The effort requires nothing less than everything. At last, the new man is born. The new man survives a terrible fire, proving to his creator that his son is immortal. The creator/dreamer then, miraculously, survives a similar catastrophic fire. He, then, realizes, that he, too is a dream. As we have suggested, Arnold quite deliberately set out to dream up himself and has continued to revise his creation regularly. We, too, have spent many nights dreaming Arnold Schwarzenegger and the dreams are still further versions of the dreamed-man. Borges story is one of infinite recursion; ours is, we would argue, one of potentially infinite hyper-activity. The dreams beget a man whose life and works beget the dreams.
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