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Since its publication in 1991, The World of Myth has provided thousands of students with a fascinating, wide-ranging introduction to world mythology. Building on the bestselling tradition of the first edition, the long-awaited second edition offers a uniquely comprehensive collection of myths from numerous cultures around the globe. Featuring a thematic organization, it helps students understand world mythology as a metaphor for humanity's search for meaning in a complex world. Author David Leeming presents a sweeping variety of myths whose origins range from ancient Egypt and Greece to the Polynesian islands and modern science. Students will be captivated by stories of great floods from the ancient Babylonians, Hebrews, Chinese, and Mayans; tales of apocalypse from India, the Norse, Christianity, and modern science; myths of the mother goddess from Native American Hopi culture and James Lovelock's Gaia; and much more. One of the most wide-ranging anthologies available, this volume includes myths from African, Australian Aboriginal, Aztec, Celtic, Chinese, Greek, Hittite, Japanese, Muslim, and Persian cultures.
David Leeming is Professor Emeritus of English at the University of Connecticut in Storrs. He is the author of many books on mythology, including The Oxford Companion to World Mythology (2005).
Table of Contents
Introduction: The Dimensions of Myth
PART ONE. COSMIC MYTHS
Egypt: Ex Nihilo Beginnings
Mesopotamia (Babylon): Enuma Elish and the World Parent
Israel: Genesis and the Talmudic Lilith
India: The Sacred Words
Iran (Persia): Aryan and Zoroastrian
China: Cosmic Egg and Yin and Yang
Greece: Hesiod's Theogony
Iceland (Norse): The World Parent of the Eddas
Meso-America (Aztec-Mexica): Coatlicue the World Mother
Native North America (Onondagan): Star Woman and Earth Divers
Africa (Boshongo-Bantu): Bumba's Creation
Native North America (Acoma); Goddesses and the Emergence
Modern Physics: The Big Bang
Mesopotamia (Sumer-Babylon): Utnapishtim (Ziusudra)
Iran (Zoroastrian): Yima
Egypt: Hathor, Blood and Beer
Greece-Rome: Deucalion and Pyrrha
Meso-America (Mayan): The Popol-Vuh
South-America (Incan): Viracocha and the Giants
Israel: The Day of Yahweh
Asia Minor (Christian): The Book of Revelation
Iran (Zoroastrian): The Savior Saoshyant
Arabia (Muslim): End of the World
India: The End of the Kali Age
Native North America (Hopi): Emergence to the Fifth World
Iceland (Norse): Ragnarök
Modern Physics: Entropy and Heat Death
PART TWO. MYTHS OF THE GODS
Mesopotamia (Sumer): Gods of the Elements
India: The Triad
Greece: Orginators and Olympians
Rome: The Renamed Olympians
Iceland (Norse): The Aesir and the Vanir
Ireland and Wales: The Family of Don and the Tuatha de Danann
The God as Archetype
The Supreme Being
India: Krishna-Vishnu as Brahman
Native South America (Uitoto): Nainema
Africa (Bushman): Mantis
Native North America (Cherokee): Sun Goddess
Modern Science: Immanent Mind
The Great Mother
Ireland and Wales: Danu-Don
Native North America (Inuit): Sedna
North America (Lakota Sioux): White Buffalo Woman
Mexico: Our Lady of Guadaloupe
Modern Science: Gaia as Earth
The Dying God
Mesopotamia (Sumer): Inanna (Ishtar)
Egypt: Osiris and Isis
Greece and Rome: Adonis and Aphrodite
Asia Minor (Phrygia): Attis
Iceland (Norse): Odin
Native North America (Penobscot): Corn Mother
Mesopotamia (Sumer): Enki and the Me
Greece: Hermes Steals the Cattle
India: Krishna and the Gopis
Iceland (Norse): Loki
Native North America (Maida): Coyote
Africa (Fon): Legba
Gods, Goddesses, and Lesser Spirits
Greece and Rome
PART THREE. HERO MYTHS
Native North America (Tewa): Water Jar Boy
Greece: Herakles (Hercules) and the Twelve Labors
India: The Buddha
Europe: King Arthur
Europe: Parcival and the Holy Grail
Greece: Jason and the Golden Fleece
Arabia: Muhammad and the Night Journey
Africa (Kikuyu): Wanjiru
Indonesia (Ceram): Hainuwele
India: Rama and Sita
Australia (Aboriginal): The Pleiades
Greece and Rome: Orpheus and Eurydice
Meso-America (Toltec/Aztec): Quetzalcoatl
PART FOUR. PLACE AND OBJECT MYTHS
The World of Afterlife
Greece and Rome: Lands of the Dead
Native North America (Hopi): The Kachinas
India: Mount Meru
Greece and Rome: Troy
Europe: The Chapel Perilous
Native North American (Apache): The Vagina Girls
Asia Minor (Phrygia): The Agdos Rock
Australia (Aboriginal): Erathipa
India: The Cosmic Tree
Iceland (Norse): Yggdrasil
The Garden, the Grove, and the Cave
Arabia: Muhammad's Cave
Greece: Daedalus and Icarus