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Northrop Frye and the Phenomenology of Myth

Northrop Frye and the Phenomenology of Myth

Glen Robert Gill
Series: Frye Studies
Copyright Date: 2006
Pages: 240
  • Book Info
    Northrop Frye and the Phenomenology of Myth
    Book Description:

    With excursions into fields such as literary theory, depth psychology, theology, and anthropology,Northrop Frye and the Phenomenology of Mythis essential to the understanding of Frye's important mythological work.

    eISBN: 978-1-4426-2760-4
    Subjects: Language & Literature

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-viii)
  3. Preface
    (pp. ix-xii)
  4. Abbreviations
    (pp. xiii-2)
  5. Introduction: Phenomenology and Modern Mythography: Northrop Frye in Context and Contrast
    (pp. 3-20)

    The twentieth century saw the appearance of a remarkable array of influential thinkers and theorists of the subject of myth. The middle of the century, in particular, witnessed the advent of several figures whose contributions to the study of myth are among the most significant in history. The most sophisticated and radical of these figures, Northrop Frye, has been overshadowed by some others, however, owing to a complex of pseudo-causes which include the relatively non-controversial nature of his persona and politics, a slightly narrower readership, and the misapprehension of his specific field of research (literature) as peripheral rather than central...

  6. one De Caelis: The Platonic Patterns of Mircea Eliade
    (pp. 21-44)

    At first glance, Mircea Eliade’s two texts of 1949,Patterns in Comparative ReligionandThe Myth of the Eternal Return, appear to be separate studies of myth that happen to have been published by the same author in the same year. Upon closer examination, however, one begins to suspect that the two works have been contrived to approach the subject of myth and mythic experience from opposite directions in order to provide a complete theory. WhilePatternsis broad, encyclopedic, and concerned with the arrangement of mythic space,Eternal Returnis focused, theoretical, and presented as a discussion of the...

  7. two De Profundis: C.G. Jung and the Archetypes of the Collective Unconscious
    (pp. 45-72)

    The most influential mythologist of the twentieth century is, without question, Carl Gustav Jung. Since emerging after ten years of discipleship from the shadow of Sigmund Freud in 1912, Jung has enjoyed varying degrees of critical acceptance, but has never been without a large number of readers and devotees. The period from 1933 (when the Eranos conferences first began) to 1961 (the year of his death) can in retrospect be identified as the term of his greatest influence and, while his reputation has increasingly suffered since then, a strong core interest in his work persists. Virtually every major city in...

  8. three The Inner Reaches of Outer Space: Joseph Campbell and the Two Faces of Myth
    (pp. 73-100)

    If C.G. Jung is the most influential mythologist of the twentieth century, the most popular, in every sense of the word, is surely Joseph Campbell. Thoroughly committed to myth’s existential value and suspicious of the narrowness of academic standards, Campbell continually sought everwider audiences for his writings and ideas. From his co-authorship ofA Skeleton Key to Finnegans Wake(1944), a study of Joyce’s myth-infused masterwork, to his reputation-buildingThe Hero with a Thousand Faces(1949), to his magisterial four-volume survey of world mythologyThe Masks of God(1959–67), Campbell’s career was one of steadily growing public fame. This...

  9. four Cleansing the Doors of Perception: Northrop Frye’s Fearful Symmetry
    (pp. 101-178)

    The origin ofFearful Symmetrycan be traced back to a cold night in February of 1934, when the then twenty-two-year-old Northrop Frye was working on a paper on William Blake for a graduate school seminar. As he sat in an all-night cafeteria on Bloor Street in Toronto called Bowles Lunch, working on a reading of Blake’sMilton, something unusual happened, which he would later recount at least three times in three different settings. ‘I ... started working on [the paper] the night before I was to read it,’ Frye told interviewer David Cayley. ‘It was around three in the...

  10. Conclusion: Phenomenology and Postmodern Mythography: Northrop Frye’s Words with Power and the Theory of Kerygma
    (pp. 179-202)

    The usual pattern of an intellectual life is one that sees the idealism and radicalism of youth gradually replaced by the pragmatism and conservatism of maturity, the process Northrop Frye in his study of Blake called the Orc cycle, in reference to the submission of the rebellious Orc to the aging, tyrannical Urizen. Having studied the dangers of this cycle, Frye made sure that his own career avoided the pattern. During the final years of his life, he wrote as radically about the nature and importance of myth and metaphor as he had inFearful Symmetry, and came again to...

  11. Notes
    (pp. 203-218)
  12. Works Cited and Consulted
    (pp. 219-230)
  13. Index
    (pp. 231-242)