Mythology Midterm 3 Study Guide
Mythology Midterm 3 Study Guide class0030
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This 6 page Study Guide was uploaded by Anna Perry on Wednesday April 20, 2016. The Study Guide belongs to class0030 at University of Pittsburgh taught by Marilyn Jones in Spring 2016. Since its upload, it has received 125 views. For similar materials see Mythology of the Ancient World in Classical Studies at University of Pittsburgh.
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Date Created: 04/20/16
Theories to Know for Third Exam (Ch 25) Cultural Relativism—people make gods in own image Allegory— o Physical allegory—battles among gods represent conflict between natural forces o Psychological allegory—gods represent characteristics – Athena represents rational thought; Ares, irrational violence; Aphrodite, desire; Hermes, reason o Historical allegory—Euhemerism—belief that gods were once great kings (mortals who became deified – like Heracles) (Asclepius maybe originally a mortal doctor; Heracles originally a mortal who gained immortality by his deeds; Zeus as originally a dying god [or king] of fertility); myths originating as misunderstanding of language (Actaeon being devoured by his dogs – was he devoured or were his resources?) o Metaphysical allegory—myths express metaphysical truth Theories of the Enlightenment—myths as the product of error Romantic theories—myth as vehicle for regaining lost truth that had existed in the past Anthropological theories—myths represent intellectual backwardness and arose during the matriarchal phase of early human development Animism—all things have a soul; myth rooted in fear or ignorance Ritual theory—myths to explain actual rituals that occured; the king must die that the people may live (Promethius; Inanna and Dumuzi sacred marriage) o Fertility myths require sacrifices Charter theory—myth serves as justification for the way things are o Foundation legends – theseus o Augustus’s rule Social Function—myth justifies or validates economic, political, social and religious realities Linguistic theories— o Solar mythology—myth to explain prominent natural phenomena; allegory of struggle between sunlight and darkness o IndoEuropean linguistics—myth begins through disease of language (Odysseus’ imprisonment in cave represented waxing and waning year; Midas as sun gilding everything it touches; Phaethon showing how excessive heat causes drought that is broken by thunderstorm) o IndoEuropean comparative mythology—attempts to reconstruct original IE on basis of historical survivals; Dumezil posits three hypothetical classes of IE society as a pyramid: rulers and priests at the top (represented by Hera in Judgment of Paris), then warriors (represented by Athena) and then food producers (represented by Aphrodite) Psychological theories—myths are collective and recurrent dreams of the human species (Oedipus) Archetypes—myths are timeless recurrent images (dragon combat as obstacles heroes face; Heracles; Perseus; Jason) Structuralist theories—meaning of myth is conveyed by the structural relations behind the content; meaning of myth is its pure form Opposition of intolerable dualities—myth mediates these opposites (life/death; journeys to underworld; conflict between Antigone and Creon “I’m the king, I should get my way”) Contextual approach—cultural and historical context must always be taken into account The third and last exam for the Myth class will take place on Thursday, April 21, at 2:30 in our classroom. The exam will cover: Chapter 19 (Jason and the Argonauts): National geographic article – golden fleece Focus on Jason and Madea Madea falls in love with Jason through agency of Hera and Aphrodite Betrays father to help Jason accomplish his task of retrieving the fleece makes dragon fall asleep with her magic Even after everything she does for him, Jason leaves Madea for Glauke Madea makes wedding robes for Glauke that eat at her flesh. This kills her and her father, who tried to save her Madea also kills her own sons as a final revenge for Jason – she hates him more than she loves her sons What kind of hero is Jason? Typical like other heroes we’ve talked about? To protect Jason from Pelias, his mother sent him to be raised on Mt. Pelion by Chiron, the centaur Folktale motif of quest and dragon combat Madea is responsible for success All heroes need help Some thought that he is unsuccessful hero because Madea comes up with all the help and strategies he needs to defeat the obstacles he faces Contrast between civilized life and barbarian (Jason emphasizes that he brought Madea out of a barbarian life into Greece – shows Greece is peak of civilization) Chapter 20 (The Trojan War): Focus on common themes of how houses became dominant within Greece and why characters are important (brothers vs, brothers, who is legit ruler of each city state?) The house of Atreus: kings who led the Greek forces to Troy The house of Tyndareus: King Tyndareus was married to Leda, who gave birth to 4 children – Polydeuces and Helen by Zeus, and Castor and Clytemnestra by Tyndareus. reason for war – stealing of Helen There is a competition for Helen’s hand – Menelaus wins Judgment of Paris names Helen the prize of Paris (since he chose Aphrodite) Pair and Helen fall in love, elope and sail away to Troy, taking some of Menelaus’ treasure with them and violating xenia. Helen must be retrieved from Troy and all are punished “Oath of Tyndareus” – all suitors agree to support winner if Helen is ever stolen away She is stolen from Menelaus by Paris so Menelaus assembles the former suitors and prepares to retrieve her from Troy. If War was real, it was probably for economic reasons Illiad is basis for details but is not concerned with everything in the war (Agamemnon & Achilles – idea of honor, what does honor mean to the ancient greeks? Honor was gained in battle – accomplished, more respectable to die than to run, best warrior wins a prize – must be given something physical to show accomplishments) Homer focuses on turbulent emotions of a single man who allows anger to run away with him (Achilles) Chapter 21 (The Aftermath of the Trojan War): Achilles killed by arrow of Paris, guided by Apollo. Arms of Achilles are given to Odysseus and this is an issue because they should have gone to Ajax, the next best warrior( great dishonor to Ajax – shame culture, he commits suicide) Trojan Horse idea created by Odysseus – “gift from Athena” Priest of Poseidon tries to help Trojans but sea serpent strangles him “beware the gifts of the greeks Agamemnon’s return – Clytemnestra murders him for sacrificing Iphegenia, Orestes is ordered by Oracle of Apollo to avenge father’s death, kills mother, Furies surround him Trial of Orestes – was his reason for killing his mother legitimate? Mother was just the soil for the seed of the father, agricultural metaphor for inheritance and genetics Jury of 12 Athenians changes way decisions are made in Greece (Athena cast deciding vote in Orestes favor) – change from blood vendettas to logic Chapter 22 (The Return of Odysseus): Watch film Important themes from film and Homer Men cause their own downfall – not the gods. o Violation of prohibition – men eat stolen animals and wine in Thrace, men open bag of winds, eat cattle of Helius o Justice is based on restraint Hero must slay dragon or “dragon combat” o Odysseus kills many monsterlike creatures o Killing Penelope’s suitors o Odysseus gets the woman as reward for “slaying dragon” Hero’s victory over death o Sleep (he falls asleep at important parts of the story) o Narcosis (lotus eaters) o Darkness (cave of Polyphemus, Land of Cimmerians) o Forgetfulness of purpose (Circe) o Calypso offers him eternal life, but it is eternal death for the inquisitive man ever thirsting for adventure “All but one” motif o Laestrygonians kill everyone and destroy all chips but the one of Odysseus and his crew. o Everyone but Odysseus downs in the Island of Helius 10 years of wandering Chapter 23 (The Legends of Aeneas): Idea of pietas superseding desires of individual – if not pious, traitor The Roman state was seen as an extension of the family Extraordinary devotion to paterfamilias first and then to state rather than to one’s own desires Pietas could legitimize suppression of political opposition Set rules for how to approach the state regarding decisions Mythology of Romans exemplified promoting the idea of suppressing personal interests for the common good The Roman state was seen as an extention of the family Roman Versions of Greek gods: (Numina first) Zeus – Jupiter Hera – Juno Demeter – Ceres Poseidon – Neptune Hestia – Vesta Artemis – Diana Aphrodite – Venus Hermes – Mercury Hephaestus – Vulcan Apollo – Apollo Ares – Mars Athena – Minerva Dionysus – Liber Hades – Dis Protectors of people of household – Lar/es Protectors of household things – Penates Legend of Aeneid Chapter 24 (Legends of Early Rome): Romulus and Remus The format of the exam will be the same as the previous exams: 20 multiple choice questions; 30 matching questions in 3 sets of ten (theories of myth, equivalent names of Greek and Roman gods and goddesses, and technical terms, motifs and themes) 10 true/false questions. The handouts, and chapter notes should serve as your study guides. In addition to the conceptual questions about the above listed chapters, you can expect questions on the films viewed in class. All these films are available on youtube: In Search of Myths and HeroesJason and the Golden Fleece, with narration by Michael Wood; Jason and the Argonauts, Hallmark Entertainment (2000); Medeafilm of Euripides' play, translated by Robinson Jeffers (1990); The Odyssey, Hallmark (1997).
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