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DHUM 1255A - Myths, Politics and Myth Making

Type d'enseignement : Elective

Semester : Spring 2017-2018

Number of hours : 24

Language of tuition : English


Basic knowledge in Graeco-Roman mythology and culture is required. Specialized knowledge in anthropological and theoretical issues in mythology is not required. Basic knowledge in anthropology, social siences and psychology is welcome, but not necessary.

Course Description

Mythology is not only a set of stories, a catalogue of topics or a list of names. It is also a disciplinary area where symbolism, structuralism and post-modernism have elaborated their tools. Mythology is good to think with, in order to reflect upon intellectual developments of the 20th and early 21st century. The course is devoted to a practical analysis of ancient mythology. We will study what Greek and Roman men and women thought when they composed poems or draw pictures based on mythic themes, and we will also contemplate what these themes became in our own times. We will deal with mythopoetics, or in more modern terms, with the fabric of the myth. Cultural and political areas will provide us with examples to think with the myth.


DELATTRE, Charles (Maître de conférences des Universités)

Course validation

Students will be invited to present orally a case study or to develop it in a written form, after approval of the case study by the teacher.

Required reading

  • E. Csapo, Theories of mythology, coll. Ancient Cultures, Oxford, Blackwell, 2005
  • M. de Certeau, The Practice of Everyday Life, trad. S. Rendall, Berkeley & Los Angeles, University of California Press, 1984
  • R. Buxton, Imaginary Greece. The Contexts of Mythology, Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 1994

Additional required reading

  • R. D. Woodard (éd.), The Cambridge Companion to Greek Mythology, Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 2008
  • Cl. Aziza, Guide de l'Antiquité imaginaire, roman, cinéma, bande dessinée, Paris, Les Belles Lettres, 2008
  • D. Lowe & K. Shahabudin (éds.), Classics for All. Reworking Antiquity in Mass Culture, Cambridge, Cambridge Scholars, 2009
  • J. Seznec, The Survival of the Pagan Gods. The Mythological Tradition and Its Place in Renaissance Humanism and Art, Barbara F. Sessions (trad.), New York, 1953
  • I. L. Wallace & J. Hirsh (éds.), Contemporary Art and Classical Myth, Farnham & Burlington (VT), Ashgate, 2011
  • R. Girardet, Mythes et mythologies politiques, Paris, Seuil, 1986
  • R. Barthes, Mythologies, coll. Points, Paris, Seuil, 1957