Love, Myth, and Ritual: The Mythic Dimension and Adolescence in Longus’ Daphnis and Chloe

Bierl, Anton. (2014) Love, Myth, and Ritual: The Mythic Dimension and Adolescence in Longus’ Daphnis and Chloe. In: A companion to the ancient novel. Chichester, pp. 441-455.

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The Greek ideal love novels are, to some extent, the modern myths of the imperial age, and myth, ritual and religion play a central role. In religious terms only quite recently we encounter a shift away from reading the novel as a mystery text to interpretations as a rite of passage of adolescents. The texts based on an erotic poetics focus upon, rework, circulate around, retract and help to overcome the deep crisis of puberty, the sudden discovery of sexuality and early marriage of young people. In my contribution, I analyze Longos’ Daphnis and Chloe as an idealizing and natural myth that functions as the enabling structure and precondition of the plot also on a symbolic and synaesthetic level, looking at how he employs mythos and related terms. The sophisticated writer designs a mythic world in such an artificial and contrived form that it evokes the pretense of authenticity and authoritativeness as well as ingenuousness. After all, Daphnis and Chloe reads like a new, artful myth which in the shape of an old Ur-myth or fairy-tale which provides the aetiology of the ritual coming of age.
Faculties and Departments:04 Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > Departement Altertumswissenschaften > Fachbereich Gräzistik > Griechische Philologie (Bierl)
UniBasel Contributors:Bierl, Anton F.H.
Item Type:Book Section, refereed
Book Section Subtype:Further Contribution in a Book
Publisher:Wiley Blackwell
ISBN:978-1-4443-3602-3 (hbk.)
Series Name:Blackwell companions to the ancient world
Note:Publication type according to Uni Basel Research Database: Book item
Last Modified:21 Feb 2018 13:31
Deposited On:20 Jun 2014 07:55

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