A myth is a story serving as a focus to a system of beliefs.
How to Analyze a Myth:
• Situate all myths within their relevant social, cultural, and temporal contexts.
When was it written? What is the history of the period?
o For which audience was the myth written?
o Where did it originate?
o Social classes? Is it for everyone?
o Moral lesson taught by myth?
o Social behaviors?
Differences Within Creation Myths:
• Body type
o Theriomorphic (animal)
o Therianthropic (animal and human)
• Social structure and government
Creation as Progress vs. Fall from Grace
o Creation as Progress: gets better when you add to it.
o Fall from Grace: everything was perfect but something bad happens.
• Order vs. Chaos
• The status of humans
o Gender roles
Heroes and Heroines: A Grammatical Tangent
Hero -> Hero's Heroes -> Heroes'
Heroine -> Heroine's Heroines -> Heroines'
What defines a hero?
Modern Vs. Ancient
• Strong • Trick
• Silent sters
• Doesn't complain • Shor
about tiring things t life spans
• Women in Antiquity
Female rites of passage (stay home and produce a hero)
o Use of women in heroic stories: