The Greek Myths - Chapter 15, The Final Summary & Analysis

This Study Guide consists of approximately 34 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Greek Myths.
This section contains 492 words
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Chapter 15, The Final Summary and Analysis

This more thorough examination of the Greek Myths provides a reminder to those stories already well known, but includes information which many readers may not have realized. The circumstances surrounding Sisyphus are but one example. As already mentioned, readers may have some familiarity with many of the stories already due to their own prior education. The tales are written in a clear manner. The style may take some getting used to. Typically, the characters are prominent people within the world of Grecian city-states. Robert Graves includes methods for the best ways to interpret the stories as readers make their way through the body of myth. The stories normally have one literal component. The characters were real, living beings. The events actually took place. There is also another level; that of symbolism. Many of the characters referred to seem to have doubled as symbols. In many instances, when an individual goes from one location to another, there is also often a movement in at least one religious rite that goes along with it. Individuals double as representations of solar and lunar deities.

Mating has a puzzling aspect in these stories due to the prevalence of mating with divine beings. To the contemporary view, this is quite bizarre and assumed to be false. For most readers, this will be most familiar from a Christian frame of reference. There are stories in the Bible, mainly old Jewish myths, about a time in history when angels did cross breed with humans. In fact, it was rather prevalent and there were some odd results. Robert Graves walks readers through a realm in which this was in fact the case. Naturally, most readers will tend to assume this was code-language for the culture - just as most readers know that normally when people say they're going to kill someone, they do not mean this literally and are not going to take such drastic measures over their hostility. Likewise - readers will wonder: was 'son of the god' another way of saying 'born of a rape victim' or 'result of a one night stand' or 'some anonymous lover who's name was not revealed'? Robert Graves does not explain this in this book. The divine beings are like mortal men in that they may or may not respond to any given request of shows of desire on the part of a woman or man mortal. There is one story where a woman pining for love begins to seek the fulfillment of her desires from a river's prevailing spirit. The god Poseidon noticed her, however, and felt she was attractive. He determined to help and to fulfill her, and believed that she was going to be happier because this was going to be better than if she had succeeded with attracting a river-god. Artemis, the chaste virgin goddess was no more committed to monogamy than the women who married.

This section contains 492 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
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