Event Title

Female Hero Mega-Archetypes

Location

Bobo Room, Hodgin Hall, Third Floor

Start Date

8-11-2017 12:30 PM

End Date

8-11-2017 1:30 PM

Description

My research explores comparative female hero-archetypes in medieval romances as narrative structures inspired by the Quran and the Bible. I argue that these scriptural narratives offer the female personas archetypal narrative blueprints we find in works of literature. Scholars like Lord Raglan and Joseph Campbell based their structuralist theories on the male hero “monomyth” without extending it to examining the feminine. It is the narrative structures offered by the female personas that different flavors and angles are added to a monomythical narrative. There are at least twelve female persona archetypes, which I call “mega-archetype,” as the stories of my female heroes are inspired by the “mega-narratives” of the Islamic and the Judeo-Christian scriptures. For the lack of time and space I am only exploring five out of these twelve mega-archetypes in this research and these are: Queen of Sheba, Potiphar’s wife, Sarah and Hagar, the Virgin Mary and al-Khidr (Moses’ companion and helper). In order to prove that these mega-archetypes cut across culture, time, race (and gender in case of al-Khidr), I use a multitude of medieval European romances from England, Ireland, France, Germany and Holland. I also make minor applications to medieval Arabic as well as Persian texts in order to illustrate the universality of my theory. In addition to that, my research binds two fields of scholarship that have always been regarded as estranged: postcolonial theory and archetypes. The last chapter of my research highlights how these feminine archetypes function as nationalistic forces in the medieval epic. This discussion continues to be relevant today which is why it can be further extended into a larger scope of research on nationalism and archetypes.

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Nov 8th, 12:30 PM Nov 8th, 1:30 PM

Female Hero Mega-Archetypes

Bobo Room, Hodgin Hall, Third Floor

My research explores comparative female hero-archetypes in medieval romances as narrative structures inspired by the Quran and the Bible. I argue that these scriptural narratives offer the female personas archetypal narrative blueprints we find in works of literature. Scholars like Lord Raglan and Joseph Campbell based their structuralist theories on the male hero “monomyth” without extending it to examining the feminine. It is the narrative structures offered by the female personas that different flavors and angles are added to a monomythical narrative. There are at least twelve female persona archetypes, which I call “mega-archetype,” as the stories of my female heroes are inspired by the “mega-narratives” of the Islamic and the Judeo-Christian scriptures. For the lack of time and space I am only exploring five out of these twelve mega-archetypes in this research and these are: Queen of Sheba, Potiphar’s wife, Sarah and Hagar, the Virgin Mary and al-Khidr (Moses’ companion and helper). In order to prove that these mega-archetypes cut across culture, time, race (and gender in case of al-Khidr), I use a multitude of medieval European romances from England, Ireland, France, Germany and Holland. I also make minor applications to medieval Arabic as well as Persian texts in order to illustrate the universality of my theory. In addition to that, my research binds two fields of scholarship that have always been regarded as estranged: postcolonial theory and archetypes. The last chapter of my research highlights how these feminine archetypes function as nationalistic forces in the medieval epic. This discussion continues to be relevant today which is why it can be further extended into a larger scope of research on nationalism and archetypes.