Survival of Myth
What are myths and what are they for? Myths are stories that both tell us how to live and remind us of the inescapability and pull of the collective past. The Survival of Myth: Innovation, Singularity and Alterity explores the continuing power of primal stories to inhabit our thinking. An international range of contributors examine a range of texts and figures from the Bible to Cormac McCarthy and from Thor to the Virgin Mary to focus on the way that ancient stories both give access to the unconscious and offer individuals and communities personae or masks. Myths translated and recreated become, in this sense, very public acts about very private thoughts and feelings. The subtitle of the book, 'Innovation, Singularity and Alterity,' reflects the way in which the history of cultures in all genres is a history of innovation, of a search for new modes of expression which, paradoxically, often entails recourse to myth precisely because it offers narratives of singularity and otherness which may be readily appropriated. The individual contributors offer testament to the continuing significance of myth through its own constant metamorphosis, as it both reflects and transforms the societies in which it is (re)produced.
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