Author Topic: Can myths become obsolete?  (Read 2955 times)

Offline D. J. R. Allkins

  • Thaumaturge
  • ***
  • Posts: 154
  • AKA , D.J.R. Allkins
    • View Profile
    • Tides from a scribbling sea
Can myths become obsolete?
« on: November 27, 2007, 05:29:48 pm »
I?ve just finished reading Girl meets Boy by Ali Smith

It?s supposed to be an entry in ?The Myths? series, dealing with the myth of Iphis from Ovid.  But it doesn?t really apply to her story about two sisters.  One of the sisters is told it by her girlfriend.  But if it had been removed it wouldn?t make any difference to the narrative. 

However, the myth is about a girl raised as a boy, who the goddess Isis changes to a boy, so that she may marry the girl she has been raised to marry.  As Smith?s narrative is taking place in present day Scotland, the pressure for the need to change sex is absent.  (Neither of the sisters is presented as wanting to become men, which they could do without magic anyway.)  So do some myths become irrelevant or outdated depending on the time or culture that we live in?

Offline LeeH

  • BFS Committee
  • Thaumaturge
  • *****
  • Posts: 283
    • View Profile
    • BFS
Re: Can myths become obsolete?
« Reply #1 on: November 27, 2007, 09:07:40 pm »
I think that all myths become outdated, but if a myth is saying anything about the human condition, then it cannot become irrelevant.

As much as cultures change, the human spirit remains pretty constant. Where a myth is based around people, the landscape may change but the people remain the same. The myth may become allegorical due to its historic (or otherwise) setting, but the story - and its lesson - remains true.
--------
FantasyCon 2014 Co-Chair

Offline joshua rainbird

  • Whirlpool
  • Barbarian Monarch
  • ****
  • Posts: 589
  • Overlation stimuload...
    • View Profile
    • myspace/joshuarainbird
Re: Can myths become obsolete?
« Reply #2 on: November 27, 2007, 10:46:50 pm »
Ramin Bahrani did an amazing job with updating the Sisyphus myth with his film Man Push Cart
If wishes were horses then we'd all be eating steak.
Jayne Cobb, Firefly.

But ... if fishes were courses then we'd all be eating hake ...

Offline Pigasus

  • Thaumaturge
  • ***
  • Posts: 328
    • View Profile
    • VideoVista
Re: Can myths become obsolete?
« Reply #3 on: November 28, 2007, 09:38:49 am »
Ramin Bahrani did an amazing job with updating the Sisyphus myth with his film Man Push Cart

Joshua's review is here.

Offline mightyjoeyoung

  • Whirlpool
  • Thaumaturge
  • ****
  • Posts: 251
  • To write. To be truly read. That must be glorious.
    • View Profile
Re: Can myths become obsolete?
« Reply #4 on: October 21, 2011, 02:07:57 pm »
I think a lot of myths suffer as a result of either a general apathy towards the message in them, possibly because of the failures of school lessons geared toward reading, or as a result of dilution in the video-game age where new myths and legends are created willy-nilly, often with no actual meaningful statement other than 'Here's our game, thanks for the 35.99'.