The Handy Mythology Answer Book (Handy Answer Books) (Paperback)
Vainglorious gods and irresistible seductresses. Beastly beasts and brutal warriors. Stories centuries in the making, and centuries worth of stories, are explained in this fascinating guide to mythology.
Mythology forms our understanding of our origin, history, and traditions. They tell of our heroes and deities. Myths are vehicles for understanding religion, learning language, and understanding society, but they can often be difficult to understand and confusing. From a world of gods and goddesses to classic heroes and epic journeys to beastly monsters and irresistible seductresses, The Handy Mythology Answer Book answers nearly 600 questions and offers fun facts about the treachery and violence, the inspirational and epic, the supernatural monsters and heroic mortals found in mythology, including ... What is the nature of Creation Myths? How can myths be compared to dreams? What was the Egyptian Book of the Dead? Why is the biblical flood story so like the Babylonian flood myth? How and why are the Odyssey and the Iliad so different from each other? How is myth used in politics? What was the Metamorphosis? How did the Vedas contribute to Hindu mythology? Who invented Chinese writing? What was the Aztec pantheon? What is the story of the Cherokee Grandmother Sun? Who are some Native American tricksters? What is the story of Schr dinger's Cat? How did Freud use myths?
A glossary of commonly used terms and an appendix of parallel mythology exploring universal themes, motifs, and archetypes from across various cultures further explains the world of mythology. With many photos, illustrations, and other graphics, this tome is richly illustrated. Its helpful bibliography and extensive index add to its usefulness.
About the Author
David Leeming, Ph.D. received his B.A. in English from Princeton University and his Ph.D. in comparative literature from New York University. He spent eight years teaching at Robert College in Istanbul and twenty-six years at the University of Connecticut in Storrs, where he is an emeritus professor of English and comparative literature. He has traveled widely, studying mythological traditions around the world. His books include a biography of James Baldwin and many books on mythology, including most recently Myth: A Biography of Belief (Oxford 2002), Jealous Gods and Chosen People: The Mythology of the Middle East (Oxford 2004), The Oxford Companion to World Mythology (Oxford 2005), Creation Myths of the World (ABC-CLIO 2010), Medusa: In the Mirror of Time (Reaktion 2013), and a revised edition of The World of Myth (Oxford, 2014). He is also editor in chief of The Encyclopedia of Psychology and Religion (3rd edition, Springer, 2014). He resides in Rhinebeck, New York.