Contributed Papers

A critical history of 2012 mythology

John W. Hoopesa1

a1 Department of Anthropology, University of Kansas, 1415 Jayhawk Blvd., Lawrence, KS 66045, USA email:


The notion that December 21, 2012 will bring physical catastrophes, a transformation of consciousness, or even a New Age is an unanticipated and unintentional consequence of early speculation by credentialed academic experts. It has grown as a result of its subsequent interpretation through the lens of speculative, counterculture metaphysics by individuals with both academic and non-academic backgrounds. This article provides a historical review of the most significant contributions to the emergence of the 2012 phenomenon.

(Online publication July 26 2011)


  • 2012 phenomenon;
  • astrology;
  • Maya