There are three different matters of mythology I’ve been meaning to write about, and as long as there’s three, I’ll put ’em all in this myth-mania post.
Myth Matter #1: Journey to the Sea has been launched!
Randy Hoyt, a Hog’s Head patron, whose voice you heard on the last PubCast, has launched an online journal of mythology, and issue #1 was posted today:
- Myth: A Defintion — Journey to the Sea is a new online magazine devoted to the study of myth. The English word myth has many connotations, and Randy describes what we mean by myth throughout this site. Full article »
- God and Man: Two Western Themes — Many Western traditions teach that mankind is separate from the divine. They typically reflect one of two contrary themes concerning man’s proper response to the divine. Full article »
- Magic in the World of Alvin Maker: Seventh Son (by Laura Gibbs) — Laura begins her series on the “ecology of magic” that storytellers create for their imagined worlds, looking first at the alternate America imagined by Orson Scott Card in his Alvin Maker series.Full article »
Randy explains more about the journal here. I intend to comment on the first two in the near future. (Since I haven’t read Card’s Alvin Maker stories, I don’t want to read anything about them, as I intend to eventually get to them).
Myth Matter #2: MythCon 39
Randy and I both belong to The Mythopoeic Society (he is their webmaster). The Mythopoeic Society is having its 39th conference this summer at Central Connecticut State University in New Britain, CT August 15-18. The theme is “The Valkyrie and the Goddess: The Warrior Woman in Fantasy.”
Sadly, I’ll not be able to attend (family trip to NYC that weekend), but it looks like an excellent, fascinating, and affordable conference (less than half the price of Harry Potter conferences, anyway!). Featured guests are Marjorie Burns, who is a Tolkien scholar, and Sharan Newman, a medieval historian and author.
Myth Matter #3: The July Hog’s Head Giveaway!
The giveaway for July, with details to follow on how to enter, is a collection of three unabridged audiobooks of mythology:
- Karen Armstrong, A Short History of Myth: What are myths? How have they evolved? And why do we still so desperately need them? Heralding a major series of retellings of international myths by authors from around the world, Karen Armstrong’s characteristically insightful and eloquent book serves as a brilliant and thought-provoking introduction to myth in the broadest sense – and why we dismiss it only at our peril.
- Margaret Atwood, The Penelopiad: In a splendid contemporary twist to the ancient story of Penelope and Odysseus, Margaret Atwood has chosen to give the telling of it to Penelope and to her twelve hanged Maids, asking: “What led to the hanging of the maids, and what was Penelope really up to?” In Atwood’s dazzling, playful retelling, the story becomes as wise and compassionate as it is haunting, and as wildly entertaining as it is disturbing.
- Jeannette Winterston, Weight: In ancient Greek mythology, the victorious Olympians force Atlas, guardian of the Garden of Hesperides and its golden apples of life, to bear the weight of the earth and the heavens for eternity. With her typical wit and verve, Jeanette Winterson brings Atlas into the twenty-first century. Simultaneously, she asks her own difficult questions about the nature of choice and coercion, and how we forge our own destiny.
Brilliance Audio’s “The Myths Collection, 1” could be yours for free by entering the next giveaway contest. Details on how to enter will follow in the next day or two, and I’ll play a few clips from Armstrong’s book during this week’s podcast. Winner will be announced during next week’s podcast. You’ll have plenty of time to enter.