Course Description

This course examines the historical background, characteristics, theories, and themes of ancient Greek and Chinese mythology from a comparative perspective.

Learning Outcomes

By the end of the course, students will be able to have
  • a better understanding of the theories and themes of comparative mythologies, especially those in ancient Greece and China;
  • critically thought about related issues of mythology;
  • gained a basic understanding of comparative mythology of the world as a whole.
Teaching Schedule
Jan. 6 2015 Introduction: Characteristics and Historical Background
Barry B. Powell, Classical Myth. 4th ed., (New Jersey: Prentice-Hall, 2003), pp. 1 ¡V 74.
(Lecture Powerpoint)
Jan. 13 Types and Cultural Contexts of Myths
J. F. Bierlein, Parallel Myths. (New York: Ballantine, 1994), pp. 1-36.
David Adams Leeming, The World of Myth. (Oxford University Press, 1990), pp. 3-9.
(Lecture Powerpoint)
Jan. 20 Main Themes: (1) Creation of the Universe
Powell, Classical Myth, pp.75-125.
Hesiod, Theognis. London: Penguin, 1973.
(Lecture Powerpoint)
Jan. 27 (2) ¡§Human Beings¡¨
Powell, Classical Myth, pp.109-114.
(Lecture Powerpoint)
Feb. 3 (3) ¡§Hero & War¡¨
Powell, Classical Myth, pp.138-195 and 318-420..
(Lecture Powerpoint)
Feb. 10 (4) ¡§Goddess¡¨
Powell, Classical Myth, pp.196-253.
(Lecture Powerpoint)
Feb. 17 (5) "Love"
Powell, Classical Myth, pp.475-597.
(Lecture Powerpoint)
Mar. 3 Mid-term Quiz
(No Lecture Powerpoint for Quiz Day)
Mar. 10 (6) "Flood"
Powell, Classical Myth, pp.126-137.
(Lecture Powerpoint)
Mar. 17 (7) "Monster"
Powell, Classical Myth, pp.351-387.
(Lecture Powerpoint)
Mar. 24 (8) "Death & the Underworld"
Powell, Classical Myth, pp.288-317.
(Lecture Powerpoint)
Mar. 31 (9) "Fate"
Powell, Classical Myth, pp.447-597.
(Lecture Powerpoint 1, Lecture Powerpoint 2)
Theories of Myth Interpretation
Jaan Puhvel, Comparative Mythology. (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1987).
*submission of final term paper*
(Lecture Powerpoint)
Apr. 14 Overall Review
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