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Myths of the Underworld in Contemporary Culture – The Backward Gaze - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Myths of the Underworld in Contemporary Culture: The Backward Gaze

Judith Fletcher


Stories of a visit to the realm of the dead and a return to the upper world are among the oldest narratives in European literature, beginning with Homer’s Odyssey and extending to contemporary culture. This volume examines a series of fictional works by twentieth- and twenty-first century authors, such Toni Morrison and Elena Ferrante, which deal in various ways with the descent to Hades. Myths of the Underworld in Contemporary Culture surveys a wide range of genres, including novels, short stories, comics, a cinematic adaptation, poetry, and juvenile fiction. It examines not only those texts ... More

Keywords: catabasis in literature, underworld traditions, postmodern underworld, descent to Hades, visit to underworld, women in Hades, ghost texts, haunted texts

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2019 Print ISBN-13: 9780198767091
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: June 2019 DOI:10.1093/oso/9780198767091.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Judith Fletcher, author
Professor of History and Ancient Studies, Wilfrid Laurier University

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