Resources for Authors returns with an entry of recommendations about mythology. Wherever there are people there are stories, and the oldest of these stories have become myth and legend. Whether it is the Twelve Labors of Hercules from Greece, the tales of Coyote the Trickster in North America, or the adventures of Momotarō from Japan, myths have long been part of peoples’ cultural heritage and a source of stories. Archetypes of heroes and villains, gods and monsters can be found in both ancient myths and modern media. The story arc of Star Wars: A New Hope through Return of the Jedi evokes the classical hero’s journey found in cultures across the globe. Much of the urban fantasy genre involves reinventing old myth figures in the modern world or facing heroes off against monsters and nightmares of old. Whether you want to write about gods, heroes, or monsters, Xlibris Publishing hopes you find these resources useful.
The Hero with a Thousand Faces, by Joseph Campbell: is what some consider a definitive book on hero figures in mythology and folklore. It is an analysis of key, recurring themes and concepts within hero stories from across the world.
Bullfinch’s Mythology by Thomas Bullfinch: a seminal and classic compilation text about Western Myth and Legend, put together into three volumes by Thomas Bullfinch, The Stories of the Gods, King Arthur and his Knights, and Legends of Charlemagne.
Folktales from India: a Selection of Oral Tales from Twenty-Two Languages by A.K. Ramanujan, a compilation of folk-tales and stories from all across India, originating from twenty-two different language groups.
Tales of Old Japan: Folklore, Fairy Tales, Ghost Stories, and Legends of the Samurai, by A.B. Mitford, a comprehensive look into an ancient time and culture through folk-tales, ghost stories, Buddhist sermons and the plots of No plays.
The Lost Gods, is a documentary made by Tile Films in co-production with VisionTV International Canada, that shows viewers a look into the religious beliefs and practices of six ancient civilizations: the Egyptians, the Greeks, the Romans, the Maya, the Inca, and the Celts.
Clash of the Gods, is a History Channel series that explores the gods and monsters of Greek mythology, in addition to the stories of Beowulf and Thor. There is also an episode dedicated to the monsters of J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings. The series elaborates on the cultural and historical aspects behind the myths.
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By Ian Smith