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The Oedipus Rex retelling by Sophocles is my favourite ancient play - the inevitability of disaster is so well done. You want to *yell* at him to stop investigating!


Ooh, I read up all about Freud and Oedipus many moons ago and it was rather interesting. Freud takes Oedipus's plight - killing the father, marrying the mother - as what all males want to do. But what's interesting about the original myth is that it's a tale of male initiation gone wrong. Oedipus is that awful thing, a smarty-pants, and he offends Apollo by his correct answer to the Sphinx. Men are supposed to engage in bloody battle with monsters in order to win the nubile maiden. But instead Oedipus keeps his hands clean and solves a riddle, thereby winning his mother. Oops! It's not often you can make a lit crit point via a good joke, so I did rather like this!


This attempt to wiggle out of a situation and in doing so to trigger it, is what makes these myths so fascinating for me. How often do we attract what we fear the most? It's a bit similar.


What a great project. I think you've learned a lot in reading these myths, and since you wrote about them, I suspect you'll not forget them--the broad outlines, at least. You'll probably see echoes of the stories in all your future reading!


Such a marvelous soap opera, isn't it? I don't know anything about the House of Athens though, didn't even know there was one. Looking forward to hearing more about that!


I need to read Sophocles now--I have a list of plays I want to read now that I sort of know the story. And I guess that suspense and the inevitability of doom is what must have been it so compelling!


I was hoping you would throw a little light on this question! :) I didn't even catch on about tricking the Sphinx with brains rather than brawns--it explains a lot! And we know how much the Greeks loved bloody battles, too! It throws the story in an entirely new light--I like the joke as well. :)


You're right--it's like Murphy's Law really--the worst is going to happen at the worst possible time. The myth reminded me of the story of Appointment in Samarra! Doing something to avoid your doom and in so doing you end up meeting it even sooner than later!


I really have enjoyed reading the myths again. My brain is almost too full of them, so I am glad that I have posted a little on each one and I can go back later and refresh my memory--so many stories, so many gods to remember! You're right, though, it's amazing how often references to myths pop up in stories. I want to start a page of quotes with these references--I just haven't gotten around to doing it yet.


Serious melodrama! I'm not really sure which stories/plays the House of Athens refers to, but I will soon find out. That seems like the last big story and then the rest are the lesser myths and then for some reason she threw in a chapter of Norse Mythology. So I guess I have my foundation and will have to keep building on it--there are certainly lots of other books to explore.


I'm really enjoying your posts on Greek mythology. I read Oedipus in school and was rather shocked at the violence and grotesque-ness of the tragedy. I'm currently reading Madeline Miller's The Song of Achilles where lots of familiar names pop up and it's making me want to read the Greek myths again (I think I only know the more famous tales).


Well, it's Friday (10/19) as I write this and I have yet to read the chapter. We went away for a few days this week so I am even farther behind than the last few weeks. I believe that I will just call it quits at this point. I am very glad to have read most of the book along with you because I am so much more familiar with a number of myths and have found a few favorites because of it. (And watched a few good movies too.) I still want to pursue at least skimming the "Jason Voyage" at some point in the fairly near future. You have been wonderful posting each chapter and responding to everyone's posts-must be quite a job! I would love to do another read-along with you. Are you doing Simon Savage's Classic Read-along? October is "Persuasion," which I adore. Since I had already read it, I listened to it this time on the fantastic (and free!) LibriVox recording of it. The reader is wonderful! I have also read Book 1 of "Middlemarch," the book for March because I figure I need more than one month and prefer to read it slowly. This book is a delightful surprise! I have never read anything by her before. Great so far!

Thanks so much for all your work.


Hi Laura, Thank you(!) for reading along with me--it has really helped me stick with it as I am very good at starting projects and then not finishing them--finally a (well almost there) success. It has helped that I know I am going to post every Monday, though I am sue most people are getting tired of reading about each myth--it's kind of people to leave comments. It really does help to read along with someone else or a group--so I would love to do so again in the future--just let me know what you're planning. I didn't realize Simon was going to ead Persuasion--that is my fave Jane Austen--I would be tempted to read it, too, but I am partially through Emma and should try and finish before the end of the year. I read Middlemarch in a group setting and would love to read that again someday, too. I think that is an ongoing read, isn't it? I'm sure there will be more opportunities. I'm planning on posting this weekend on my reading and then once more to wrap up the book--the last two sections will be a little longish, but I am sort of ready to move on too! Thanks again and enjoy your other reads. :)

Happy reading!


I definitely only knew the more famous tales, too. It was The Song of Achilles that prompted me to read the Hamilton, so perhaps she will inspire you as well! :) I want to read more of the plays now and more about mythology in general but I think I will take a little break from them and read something completely different for my next long read. And yes, the Greek myths--particularly the last couple of stories have been very violent--almost surprisingly so--almost verging on melodrama. I'm glad you've been enjoying the posts--I have had fun reading and writing about my reading--for once have stayed on task well--if only all my reading could go so nicely!

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