In Search of Cupid and Psyche: Myth and Legend in Children's Literature
C.S. Lewis Till We Have Faces
QUESTIONS -- Weeks 10-11
- In what ways has Lewis changed the original myth? To what purpose?
- How does Orual's point of view differ from Apuleius's?
- Is her's a traditional point of view?
- What is the nature of Orual's (pronounced, OR-RULE) relationship to Psyche?
- Express Psyche's experience and perceptions at the temple of Cupid in terms
of Eliade's argument that "Myth is seen rather as a narrative 'considered to reveal the truth par excellence'
(Quest, 73; see Myths, Dreams and Mysteries, 23 on his opposition to myth as "untrue").
- Think about Orual's growth as a "progression" through
archetypal positions--a transformation through mythic models (i.e., the
implacable mother, the wandering hero [sic]).
How does her self-understanding change?
- In what way, in the end, does "Orual also become Psyche"?
- What are the strongest mythological borrowings in this novel? (List at least three)
- What does Till We Have Faces have in common with other versions?
- "Why must holy places be dark places?"
- How does the story of Psyche constitute Orual "existentially"?
(Remember Eliade's that "Myth teaches [humanity] the primordial "stories" that have constituted
- What is the meaning of the novel's last paragraph (p. 308)?
- How does Lewis draw upon the mythic element of the magical/invisible
helpers in framing his minor characters?
- What mythic character does Fox suggest?
- Apuleius's "Cupid and Psyche" is a pagan story, which Lewis has Christianized.
Bearing in mind Eliade's notion of myth as
the 'true story,' what does Lewis's adaptation suggest about the
relationship between myth, belief, and truth?