Walker employs characterization and symbolism to highlight the difference between these interpretations and ultimately to uphold one of them, showing that culture and heritage are parts of daily life.
Mythology is the study of myth. The term myth has come to refer to a certain genre or category of stories that share characteristics that make this genre distinctly different from other genres of oral narrativessuch as legends and folktales.
Many definitions of myth repeat similar general aspects of the genre and may be summarized thus: Myths are symbolic tales of the distant past often primordial times that concern cosmogony and cosmology the origin and nature of the universemay be connected to belief systems or rituals, and may serve to direct social action and values.
For many people, myths remain value-laden discourse that explain much about human nature. There are a number of general conceptual frameworks involved in definitions of myth, including these: Myths are Cosmogonic Narratives, connected with the Foundation or Origin of the Universe and key beings within that universethough often specifically in terms of a particular culture or region.
Given the connection to origins, the setting is typically primordial the beginning of time and characters are proto-human or deific.
Myths also often have cosmogonic overtones even when not fully cosmogonic, for instance dealing with origins of important elements of the culture food, medicine, ceremonies, etc. Myths are Narratives of a Sacred Nature, often connected with some Ritual.
Myths are often foundational or key narratives associated with religions. These narratives are believed to be true from within the associated faith system though sometimes that truth is understood to be metaphorical rather than literal.
Within any given culture there may be sacred and secular myths coexisting. For example, structuralism recognizes paired bundles of opposites or dualities -- like light and dark as central to myths. Mythic Narratives often Involve Heroic Characters possibly proto-humans, super humans, or gods who mediate inherent, troubling dualities, reconcile us to our realities, or establish the patterns for life as we know it.
Myths are Narratives that are "Counter-Factual in featuring actors and actions that confound the conventions of routine experience" McDowell, They are often highly valued or disputed stories that still intrigue us even though many of us do not recognize them as a living genre in our culture.
As McDowell's definition 6 above indicates, myths often involve extraordinary characters or episodes that seem impossible in our world, but "the extraordinary feats and traits of mythic protagonists are possible only because they attach to a primary and formative period in the growth and development of civilization" 80 ; thus their various aspects or dimensions are best considered as "organically intertwined" McDowell, Myths also seem in opposition to science because they are not testable, which is the case at least for origin myths because of their primordial setting -- if events described are from a different, earlier world, then of course they would not be repeatable or logical in our world.
Both myths and science offer explanations of the cosmos. A key difference is that information about the universe presented in myths is not testable, whereas science is designed to be tested repeatedly. Science also depends on cumulative, frequently updated knowledge, whereas myth is based on passed down stories and beliefs.
Myths may change over time, particularly after contact with other cultures, but they do not change and adapt to new periods and technological developments in the same way science does.
Myths may be enacted through rituals and believed in absolutely, but they usually do not have physical effects in the real world, as in leading to new technology for building cars or providing medical treatment.
People may believe they are cured through faith, and they may find important value-laden sentiments in myths, but these "real world results" are neither empirical nor usually repeatable two standard criteria for science.
Although science differs from myth in offering actual, testable control over the environment and producing real, repeatable results in the world, science is NOT completely divorced from myth. Many scientific theories are presented or understood in narrative form, which often end up sounding remarkably mythic, as scholars like Stephen Jay Gould and Gregory Schrempp have discussed see scholarship as myth section below.
Myths were considered by Victorian scholars as survivals of previous times perhaps decayed or reflective of "primitive" ancestors who took them literally.
Some saw them as evidence for social evolutionary theories of the 19th century. These Victorians scholars like E. Tylor believed that humans in all cultures progress through stages of evolution from "savagery" to "barbarism" and finally to "civilization.
Such theories no longer seem reasonable. We have not, for instance, progressed beyond brutality, murder, war, and grave injustices just because we have more advanced technology in fact we use our technology partly to more efficiently kills other humans.
We also recognize the complexity, thoughtfulness, and beauty of many other cultures we may once have considered inferior to our own.
Based on over a century of ethnology anthropological fieldwork and research in psychology, genetics, and other disciplines, scholars now accept that humans from all eras and parts of the world have equal intellectual capacity and potential.
We understand as well today that our own theories may seem as foolish to our descendants as their conceptions of the universe sometimes seem to us see scholarship as myth section below. Our ancestors understood metaphor as well as we. This does not mean our ancestors lived exactly as we do, or that we conceive of the world in identical ways.
But myths serve us better as means of understanding our ancestors if we accept their capacity for complex intellectual and artistic expression.
Theories allow us to do our work as scholars, though our best efforts come with self-awareness of the theories and methods we employ as scholars. We now understand and discuss traditional myths and other such texts as emergent and intricately connected to performance situations or context.
The more we can understand of the context of a myth, the culture it came from, the individual who told it, when and for what purpose, the audience who received it, etc. Of course, the further back in time one goes, the harder it becomes to study context. Nonetheless, the greater the attempt to understand context one makes, the better one's potential to interpret myths becomes.
And even if we can't fully understand another culture's myths, that does not mean those myths are insignificant, useless, or "primitive" a very offensive term these days in cultural studies.A culture is a way of life of a group of people--the behaviors, beliefs, values, and symbols that they accept, generally without thinking about them, and that are passed along by communication and imitation from one generation to the next.
The quilts themselves are made up of fragments of history, of scraps of dresses, shirts, and uniforms, each of which represents those people who forged the family’s culture, its heritage, and its values.
The Popol Vuh is the creation story of the Maya. Below is one part of this story that recounts the first attempts of the creator, Heart of Sky to make humans. The story goes on to explain that the final attempt, that resulted int the "True people" was accomplished by constructing people with maize.
As a single example, at the beginning of the Catalan period the Rio del Oro [River of Gold], a heritage of classical geography, was made to debouch into the Atlantic immediately south of Cape Bojador.
A basic concept that underlines archaeological analysis are the attributes of artifacts. Potsherds are counted and weighed for each class and forms filled out recording these values.
This is the end of the road for some of the potsherds, and they are redeposited in dusty storage boxes until a later day when some analyst has specific. Culture & Values - An analysis of "The End and the Beginning" and "71 Fragments of a Chronology of Chance" Essay by canchimooru, High School, 11th grade, A+, May download word file, 5 pages download word file, 5 pages 1 votes5/5(1).