What Is Myth?

Myth combines many academic disciplines like psychology, science, and history
Myth vs Religion: blurry line, but even religious myths can be examined as stories from a literary perspective
Oral tradition is a big part of mythological storytelling
Myth: a story that has some sort of significance and staying power — I feel like this definition is too simple, but I guess it needs to be flexible.

It’s interesting to learn about the differences between versions: Does Persephone love Hades or not?
Used as an explanation for the seasons

Theories of Myth:

Mythology: study of myths
How are myths studied?
–Some ancient philosophers have stated that myths are irrational, false, and a form of lying
Euhemerism: views myth as a primitive form of science
Ancient Arians could have been the ones who formed the foundation for Indo-European language and myth
Mythology + Anthropology: we can understand cultures better by studying their myths

Joseph Campbell: the monomyth; mythology allows the individual to gain a sense of identity

The Hero’s Journey and the Monomyth:

Every culture has stories and heroes
Hero’s Journey: recurring outline of a typical hero myth
Heroes can be a reflection of ourselves

Hero’s Journey Steps (Abridged):
1. Normal Life
2. Call to Action
3. Refusal of the Call
4. Crossing the Threshold
5. Series of Trials
6. Ultimate Triumph
7. Return to Normal

Hero’s Journey examples:
Harry Potter
Percy Jackson
The Hobbit
Lord of the Rings
Star Wars

Crash Course Mythology 

Image 1: Ivan Tsarevich, a Russian folk hero. Source – Wikipedia

Image 2: Diagram of the hero’s journey. Source – Wikipedia