ARCHETYPE: A UNIVERSAL SYMBOL
ARCHETYPE: A pattern or prototype, such as a type of story, character, or common theme that is repeated in literature and reflective of the human experience.
The Quest / Hero’s Journey is one of the oldest story archetypes on the planet. And Stonehenge… Some say it is older than the Pyramids… And even cave drawings.
The Quest:Literature based on a journey, a road of trials in which a hero hears a call and leaves his home—alone or in the company of others—to search out a treasure. Along the way he undergoes trials, receives aid, fights enemies and may even die, and, if he succeeds in attaining the treasure sought, may change who and what he is, as well as the community he returns to.
The Quest has appeared in cultures throughout history. . . Homer’s Odyssey Ancient Greece 8th Century BC Virgil’s Aeneid Ancient Rome 29-19 BC Gilgamesh Ancient Mesopotamia 18th Century BC
The Holy Grail The Quest The Arthurian Legends Le Morte de Arthur Sir Thomas Mallory 1470 Chretian de Troyes’ “The Story of the Holy Grail” from Perceval Late 12th Century
Monty Python and the Holy Grail The Bridge of Death
Perceval and The Fisher King Chrétien de Troyes' Perceval Continuation of Perceval The Vulgate Cycle Malory's Morte D’arthur (King Pellam) T. S. Eliot's The Waste Land Wolfram von Eschenbach’s Parzival (Anfortas the Grail King) Wagner’s Parsifal http://www.lib.rochester.edu/camelot/Fisherking/fkessay.htm Parsifal’s Encounter with the Fisher King By Ferdinand Piloty
The Fisher King Trailer The Fisher King “The Red Knight” Parry tells the story of “The Fisher King”
The Quest Dante’s Inferno 1308-1321 The Canterbury Tales Geoffrey Chaucer Late 14th Century Gulliver’s Travels Jonathan Swift 1726 Don Quixote Miguel de Cervantes 1605-1615
Jane Eyre, 1847 Charlotte Bronte The Catcher in the Rye J.D. Salinger 1951 The Quest Candide Voltaire 1759 Song of Solomon Toni Morrison 1977
The: Quest Mythic Retellings +2,400 years Kafka on the Shore Haruki Murakami 2002 Oedipus Rex Sophocles 429 BC
WNB: How does the quest motif shed light on Their Eyes Were Watching God? • What is the physical journey? Where is Janie going? • What is the apparent purpose of the quest—the “holy grail?” • What initiates the quest? • What is the real reason for Janie’s quest? • What are the obstacles and challenges? • How is her quest structured? • How does she know when the quest is completed? • How does the quest archetype echo and add layers of meaning to the novel?
Carl Jung • Collaborator and friend of Freud • Collective unconscious = inherited fantasy life • Archetypes = basic components of human psychic nature • The hero = an important archetype
Just as the human body shows a common anatomy over and above all racial differences, so, too, the human psyche possesses a common substratum transcending all differences in culture and consciousness. Carl Jung 1875 – 1961 Swiss psychologist/ psychiatrist
I have called this substratum the collective unconscious, … [which] is … the brain structure irrespective of all racial differences.
Joseph Campbell (1904 – 1987) • American mythologist, writer and lecturer, best known for his work in comparative mythology and comparative religion. • His work is vast, covering many aspects of the human experience. • He is best known for his definition of a HERO. “Follow your bliss.”
ORIGIN of ARCHETYPESJoseph Campbell recounts a curious phenomenon of animal behavior. Newly hatched chickens, bits of egg-shells still clinging to their tails, will dart for cover when a hawk flies overhead: yet they remain unaffected by other birds. Furthermore, a wooden model of a hawk, drawn forward along a wire above their coop, will send them scurrying (if the model is pulled backward, however, there is no response). "Whence," Campbell asks, "this abrupt seizure by an image to which there is no counterpart in the chicken's world? Living gulls and ducks, herons and pigeons, leave it cold, but the work of art strikes some very deep chord!"
In his book, The Hero with a Thousand Faces, Joseph Campbell asserted that all storytelling follows the ancient patterns of myth, and that all stories use elements of the Hero’s Journey. The Monomyth.
Christopher Vogler, a Hollywood filmmaker, was inspired by Joseph Campbell’s idea of the Monomyth . In his book The Writer’s Journey, he demonstrates how writers can apply this ancient mythic structure to modern film.
Stage 1: Call to Adventure • A character exists in an ordinary world • A herald or announcer appears and indicates to the hero that his life is about to (or at least has the potential) change • The call promises both treasure and danger. • The call requires travel to a distant land, forest, or kingdom somewhere underground, beneath the waves, above the sky, on a secret island, atop a lofty mountain—even into a profound dream state. The hero must leave the ordinary world.
Odysseus is called to fight the Trojan War Dorothy wants to leave Kansas. Pinocchio wants to become a real boy.
Campbell says this about the Call to Adventure: The call [is] a … moment, of spiritual passage, which, when complete, amounts to a dying and birth. The familiar life horizon has been outgrown; the old concepts, ideals, and emotional patterns no longer fit; the time for the passing of a threshold is at hand.
Stage 2: Refusal of the Call • Almost all heroes at first refuse the adventure. • The consequences of finally accepting the call: • The person gains self-awareness and control. • The consequences of always refusing the call: • According to Campbell, the person’s “flowering world becomes a wastelandof dry stones and his life feels meaningless.”
Dorothy runs back to the farm and Auntie Em. A storm is brewing. Luke Skywalker doesn’t have time for the adventure - he has to help his Uncle Owen on the moisture farm.
Campbell says this about the Refusal of the Call: The refusal is essentially a refusal to give up what one takes to be one’s own interest.
Stage 3: Supernatural Aid (Meeting the Mentor) • Usually [but not always] masculine in form • Typically a wizard, hermit, shepherd, or smith—someone peripheral to the community • Supplies the amulets and advice that the hero will require to begin
The ruby slippers Luke receives his light saber from Obi-Wan Kenobi.
Campbell says this about the Mentor and the Supernatural Aid: For those who have not refused the call, the first encounter … is with a protective figure … who provides the adventurer with amulets against the dragon forces he is about to pass.
The hero leaves the old world behind and enters the new. Stage 4: Crossing the First Threshold
Dorothy is carried away to Oz by the tornado, and she begins her journey on the Yellow Brick Road. Luke Skywalker leaves his home on Tatooine.
Campbell says this about Crossing the First Threshold: The hero goes forward in his adventure until he comes to … the entrance zone of magnified power. Beyond … is darkness, the unknown, and danger.
Stage 5: The Belly of the Whale • The belly = the adventure, where the rules are different. • The hero is to be born again, undergo a metamorphosis, shed his old character for a new one.
For some, the Belly of the Whale experience is a situation in which the hero feels trapped. Like Jonah and Pinocchio, the hero experiences the “dark night of the soul” and must face his faults and the truth. Luke Skywalker trains with Yoda in a whale-like house. Luke, Han, and Leia are trapped in the Death Star Garbage Compactor.
Stage 6: The Road of Trials • The hero must prove that he is worthy of the quest. • This stage is PREPARATION or TRANING for the final challenge. • Dragons must be slain, victories won, barriers passed, ecstasies experienced, etc.--usually in series of threes.
A series of tests, tasks, or ordeals (often in sets of three) that the hero must undergo to begin the transformation. In The Wizard of Oz, Dorothy must first navigate the dangers of the Yellow Brick Road before she can get to her ultimate goal.
Campbell says this about the Road of Trials: Once having traversed the threshold, the hero … must survive a succession of trials.
Stage 7: Meeting with the Goddess • Usually depicted young and/or beautiful • Teaches the hero an important lesson. • Does not have to be a goddess[such as the Greek Athena or the Egyptian Isis]. Any strong female or feminine force meets the requirements for this stage. • It could also be some kind of self-discovery.
Stage 8: Woman as Temptress • Woman is the metaphor for the physical or material temptations of life. • A temptation tries to lead the hero off his path of adventure. • The “woman” can be a female, a strong feminine force, or a temptation representing lust, comfort, and/or lack of spirituality.
Someone or something tempts the hero to leave the “true path” to his goal. Luke is tempted by the Dark Side of the Force; Frodo is tempted to keep the ring for himself; Circe the witch tries to keep Odysseus on her island.
Campbell says this about the Woman as Temptress: Not even monastery walls, … not even the remoteness of the desert, can defend against female presences; for as long as the [hero’s] flesh clings to his bones and pulses warm, the images of life are alert to storm his mind.
Stage 9:Atonement with the Father • Atonement = at+one+ ment • The hero encounters his biological father, a father figure, a strong male presence, or someone or something with incredible power. • At first, the “father” represents what the hero despises or disagrees with. • The hero is killed during the encounter--either literally or symbolically--so that a new self can come into being.
I am a Jedi, like my father before me! Dorothy faces the Great Oz!