Maya Deren was one of America's greatest experimental filmmakers. Her work which was both allusive and surreal explored the visceral and sensuous as well as the symbolic and the magical. Meshes of the Afternoon which is available through YouTube still stands as one of the most important films of the 1940's, although her reputation only took off after her death in 1961. She was a seminal figure and continues to exert a strong influence on the independent cinema of the 21st century. Her influence also extends into other artistic disciplines and her book Divine Horsemen: The Living Gods of Haiti continues to be read even though many of its ethnographic assumptions are naive and sometimes contradictory.