Mythology General Notes Definitions Story: An account of incidents or events. There are five kinds of stories. Story Types Myth Story of historical events that explains a belief or natural phenomenon (like why the seasons change) Urban Legend Story based on rumors and widely believed to be true Also called urban myth Fairy Tale A children’s story involving make believe things (wizards, goblins, flying carpets, etc.) Story Types Science Fiction A story involving science gone wrong or use of science in a way not yet known to man. Folklore Similar to urban legends but only known in a certain area. Stories Categorize the following stories Stories Demeter and her Daughter Stories Federal law allows only the Texas state flag to be flown at the same height as the U.S. national flag. Stories Hercules and the 12 impossible tasks Stories Alligators in the sewers Stories The Tortoise and the Hare Stories Prometheus and fire Stories The state of Michigan threatened local beavers with a $10,000 per day fine for failing to remove their dam. Stories Star Wars Stories Aladdin Stories Superman Mythology Influence in Modern Times Greek / Roman Mythology Perhaps the most influential of all mythologies. Aegis – Zeus’ protective shield; now a famous insurance group (The Aegis Group). Ajax - Greek warrior in the Trojan War, who "cleaned up" in battle; now a popular household cleanser. Amazon - Race of huge warrior women; now a huge on-line bookstore. Apollo - God of music; Apollo Theater is a famous music hall in New York city. Atlas - Doomed to support the heavens on his shoulders; now moving company (Atlas Van Lines) Greek / Roman Mythology Nike - Winged goddess of Victory, who can run and fly at great speeds; now a famous company that sells...well...if you haven't heard of the company Nike, welcome to our planet. Pegasus - Winged horse The winged horse symbol is used by dozens of companies. Phoenix - A mythical bird ; now a car company that produced the Phoenix Thunderbird car. Norse Mythology Norse Mythology has influenced the days of the week: Day (Old Norse) Meaning Traditional Day Mánadagr Moon’s Day Monday Týsdagr Tyr’s Day Tuesday Óðinsdagr Odin’s Day Wednesday Þórsdagr Thor’s Day Thursday Frjádagr Freyja’s Day Friday Laugardagr Washing Day Saturday Sunnudagr Sun’s Day Sunday Norse Mythology Norse Mythology has influenced modern day culture: In Marvel Comics, Thor is one of the longest running superheroes of the company. In the computer game Halo, the protagonists' armor is nicknamed the Mjolnir (Thor’s Hammer). J.R.R. Tolkein (Lord of the Rings) and Douglas Adams (Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy) both reference Norse muythology in their books. The TV series Stargate SG-1 regularly features the Asgard race. A ship in the film The Matrix Reloaded is called the Mjolnir. Much of the modern jewelry women wear today is fashioned from Nordic patterns. Egyptian Myths Kingship was a key element of Egyptian mythology, the king's was a link between humanity and the gods. The concept of family was also a key element. Having a family in Egyptian mythology meant the main character was always going to have problems. Egyptian gods had specific birth dates – they didn’t happen in the long past. Egyptian Myths Introduces females in positions of leadership; now many countries have female leadership. Mummies come from Egypt; now are famous movie monsters. Images of multiple Egyptian gods appear on popular TV shows such as Dr. Who, Digimon, StarGate and others. The sphinxes in Egyptian mythology were the first to ask riddles; they later appeared in Greek stories. Egyptian ancient civilization has a distinctive culture familiar to most of the western world today, and still captures the imagination more readily than any other cultures of its time. Native American Myths The Native American stories do not share a single, unified body of mythology. The many different tribal groups each developed their own stories about the creation of the world, the place of humans in the universe, and the lives and deeds of deities and heroes. But, they all share some similar characteristics. Native American Myths Most NA myths are based in truth and could only be told during special ceremonies. Most NA stories are deeply based in Nature and are rich with the symbolism of seasons, weather, plants, animals, earth, water, sky and fire. Ghosts and spirits (and therefore horror) were introduced to our culture from NA myths; now they are the subject of multiple movies. NA myths are the first to introduce anthropomorphism, giving human qualities to animals (Rabbit, Coyote, Spider, Raven and Fox). Native American Myths NA myth telling gives u the basic format for business meetings today. NA myths are the first ones to contain a heroine (female hero). Na myths show reverence and respect for animals. Many of the tenets from these myths are followed by PETA today. NA myths also concern themselves with passing information from one generation to the next. Creation Stories Every mythos and culture has their own ideas about how the world started. All of the above are no exception. What creation myths do you know? Creation Myth Characteristics They are considered sacred accounts and can be found in nearly all known religious traditions. They are stories with a plot and characters who are either deities or animals, who often speak and transform easily. They are often set in a dim and nonspecific past. They address questions deeply meaningful to the society that shares them. They develop orally and have multiple versions[ They are the most common form of myth, found throughout human culture. Mythology in Modern Film First Things First Clark County District Policy Section XIII Regulation 6150 Regardless of the age of students participating in the program, the Department of Education upholds Regulation 6150 section XIII, wherein it states: “Electronic media in any format that are rated ‘X’, ‘R’ or ‘PG-13’ shall not be shown to students at any grade level within the school district under any circumstances, even with written permission from parents/legal guardian. Identifying the Elements of Myth There are 6 basic types of mythology that show up in today’s movies and TV shows. The Succession Myth Older and Younger Generations This is one of mankind's oldest myths, found in the literature of the Greeks and Babylonians and other ancient peoples. The typical Succession Myth covers three generations-grandfather, father, and son. It chronicles the passage of power from generation to generation. How did Zeus become king? How did Oedipus become king? The Rite of Passage Myth This myth demonstrates we moderns have nothing on the ancients when it comes to action and violence. The “hero” grows miraculously fast, or attains enormous strength at an early age When he is older, the “hero” performs the Great Exploit (he kills the monster, etc.), which confirms him as a mature “hero”. Hercules and the Impossible Tasks. Perseus and the Medusa. Oedipus and the Sphinx The Journey Myth The “hero” often goes on a journey. This is popular with Americans for we are also a mobile people. Odysseus travels for 10 years to get home. Huckleberry Finn travels down the river. The Goddess Across the Water Myth The hero will always encounter a female goddess who offers him power, love or pleasure. The relationship is doomed from the start – the hero always returns to his mortal love or pleasures. Circe The Sirens Calypso The Two Helpers Myth . The Hero also meets two Helpers, one female, the other male. The Substitute Myth On his return, the Hero loses someone near and dear to him The Substitute Who Dies in place of the Hero. The Substitute may be the Hero's best friend, his mother, or even his dog. This is a popular comic book and TV myth. Widening our Search Mythic themes in movies have to do with the universal life --birth, maturation, survival, sickness, death, and those moments when human beings confront the unstoppable forces of the universe. The myths interweave, like the events in our lives do. The Worksheet As you watch the movie, try to pick out the mythical events in it. Remember, the worksheet is for a grade too!