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The Modern Construction of Myth

by Andrew Von Hendy

  • ISBN: 9780253339966
  • ISBN10: 0253339960

The Modern Construction of Myth

by Andrew Von Hendy

  • Binding: Hardcover
  • Publisher: Indiana Univ Pr
  • Publish date: 02/01/2002
  • ISBN: 9780253339966
  • ISBN10: 0253339960
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Description: Von Hendy (English, Boston College) begins his study with the 18th--century re--creation of the concept of myth and traces its development through three subsequent classes of theories, all deriving from the romantic or transcendental theory: the ideological, the folkloric, and the constitutive, each of which persists today. The book's organization is basically chronological, but, because of the complex interdisciplinarity of writings on myth, it is also partly taxonomic and partly evaluative. Whereas other mythographers tend to concentrate on the mature theories of the writers, Von Hendy explores the development of the theories and the influences on them. His grasp of the subject is masterful; his elucidation of the genealogy of the theories and his evaluation of them are exceptional in their comprehensiveness. His style, however, is unusually dense and laborious. Although there is some overlap with William Doty's Mythography: The Study of Myths and Rituals, (1986; 2nd ed., 2000), Jan de Vries' Forschungsgeschichte der Mythologie (1961), and The Rise of Modern Mythology 1680--1860, compiled by Burton Feldman and Robert Richardson (CH, Oct'72), Von Hendy's work is sui generis. More than a study of myth, it is an exploration of modern human cultural and intellectual history. Graduate students, researchers, faculty.
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