Goddesses in Myth and Cultural Memory

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Emilie Kutash
  • New York: 
    Bloomsbury Academic
    , May
     2021.
     256 pages.
     $153.00.
     Hardcover.
    ISBN
    9780567697394.
     For other formats: Link to Publisher's Website.
Review coming soon!

Review by Samuel Wagar forthcoming.

Description

How have the goddesses of ancient myth survived, prevalent even now as literary and cultural icons? How do allegory, symbolic interpretation, and political context transform the goddess from her regional and individual identity into a goddess of philosophy and literature? Emilie Kutash explores these questions, beginning from the premise that cultural memory, a collective cultural and social phenomenon, can last thousands of years.

Kutash demonstrates a continuing practice of interpreting and allegorizing ancient myths, tracing these goddesses of archaic origin through history. Chapters follow the goddesses from their ancient near eastern prototypes, to their place in the epic poetry, drama and hymns of classical Greece, to their appearance in Platonic and Neoplatonic philosophy, Medieval allegory, and their association with Christendom.

Finally, Kutash considers how goddesses were made into Jungian archetypes, and how some contemporary feminists made them a counterfoil to male divinity, thereby addressing the continued role of goddesses in perpetuating gender binaries.

About the Author(s)/Editor(s)/Translator(s): 

Emilie Kutash is lecturer at Salem State University and Endicott College, USA.

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