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Publisher's Summary

A survey of the past 300 years of theorizing on myth, this book takes into account the work of such prominent thinkers as Albert Camus, Claude Levi-Strauss, Roland Barthes, C. G. Jung, and Sigmund Freud. It focuses on different approaches to myth, from all of the major disciplines - including science, religion, philosophy, literature, and psychology.

Robert Segal considers the future study of myth, and the possible function of myth in the world as the adult equivalent of play. In order to analyze the different theories of myth, Segal focuses on the fable concerning the fate of the preternaturally beautiful Adonis. Where one theory does not work, he substitutes another myth, showing that, for all their claims to all-inclusiveness, certain theories, in fact, only apply to specific kinds of myths. A uniform set of questions is provided to elucidate both the strengths and the weaknesses of the conjectures.

In a hurry? Listen to more Very Short Introductions.
©2004 Robert A. Segal (P)2011 Audible, Inc.

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Not an introduction to Myth

I really like these Very Short Introductions - I'm usually looking for something more substantial than a Dummies guide. But this one isn't really about myths, it's about approaches to the study of myth. And it's not about approaches to the study of myth, it's about modern variations on approaches to the study of myth. And it's not about modern variations on approaches to the study of myth, it's a comparison and analysis of the differences between specific modern authors' theories about the study of myth. That's about three layers too deep for an Introduction. Get one of the other Very Short Introductions instead.

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boring

Would you try another book from Robert A. Segal and/or Ben Esner?

No. The book was highly derivative. It lacks originality and didn't live up to what was written about it on the Audible site.

What could Robert A. Segal have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

write something that is interesting and new

What aspect of Ben Esner’s performance would you have changed?

it was fine

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Myth?

everything

Any additional comments?

Highly derivative, not interesting.

1 of 3 people found this review helpful