MYTHOLOGICAL CRITICISM
Sierra Cappel, Lunia Oriol, and Kae Moulton
KEY INFORMATION
• A mythological critic uses hopes, fears, and expectations set by certain
cultures to uncover universal ideas or themes in certain literature.
• Carl Jung, a psychologist in the 1930’s, to explain that we all share a general
subconscious and archetypes are universal
• Sir James Frazer studied myth from different cultures and found that
stories differ from detail to detail but in substance are the same.
• Northrop Frye founded the principal that all literature share a similar
pattern.
• It has strong connections with social anthropology and psychoanalysis
KEY WORDS
Fears
Religion (Water, Rising on the third day, the devil, lambs)
Myth (The Odyssey, Gods, Herculean Quest)
Explanation
Human flaws
Colors
THE PROS AND CONS
STRENGTHS
• Humans respond instinctively to
archetypal elements because we,
according to psychologist Carl Jung,
are born with a “collective
unconscious”, a level below the
subconscious where the brain collects
and stores archetypes.
• The large variety of archetypes all
relate to human flaws and experiences
WEAKNESSES
• Ignores historical, philosophical,
and aesthetic parts of a work
• Reduces the work to basic plot
and character types
CITATIONS
http://www.grossmont.edu/karl.sherlock/English160/Resources/GlossaryDr
amaLitTerms.htm#MythologicalCriticism
http://www.intech.mnsu.edu/bunkers/archetypal_theory.htm
http://www.lebanon.k12.mo.us/lhs/faculty/croden/archetypes%20and
%20archetypal%20criticism.html
http://public.wsu.edu/~delahoyd/archetypal.crit.html
http://prezi.com/upx9b5f-y-y5/archetypal-criticism/
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Mythological criticism