Mircea Eliade: Some Theoretical Problems

  • Ivan Strenski


The purpose of this chapter is to analyze critically the notion of ‘myth’ as it occurs in the thought of the historian of religion, Mircea Eliade. Because the study of myth is subsumed in Professor Eliade’s study of religions, it will be necessary first to explain how the general methodology of Eliade’s peculiar approach to the study of religions hangs together, before we can fully appreciate the character of his concept of myth.


Theoretical Problem Psychic Life Religious Phenomenon Ontological Priority Primitive Mode 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Ninian Smart, The Yogi and the Devotee (London: Allen and Unwin, 1968), Ch. 2.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Ninian Smart, Doctrine and Argument in Indian Philosophy (London: Allen and Unwin, 1964), 243.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Richard C. Zaehner, Hinduism (London: Allen and Unwin, 1966), 197.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Mircea Eliade, ‘Methodological Remarks on Religious Symbolism’, in The History of Religions: Essays in Methodology, eds Mircea Eliade and J. Kitigawa (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1959); ‘The History of Religions and a New Humanism’, History of Religions 1 (1961); ‘Crisis and Renewal in the History of Religions’, New Theology: No. 4, eds M. Marty and D. Peerman (New York: Macmillan, 1967).Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Eliade, Images and Symbols (London: Harvill, 1961), 35.Google Scholar
  6. 8.
    Eliade, The Two and the One (London: Harvill, 1965), 196.Google Scholar
  7. 9.
    Eliade, Patterns in Comparative Religion (London: Sheed and Ward, 1958), 5.Google Scholar
  8. 13.
    Eliade, The Myth of the Eternal Return (New York: Harper and Row, 1954), 34–5.Google Scholar
  9. 17.
    Eliade, Shamanism (New York: Bollingen, 1964), xiii.Google Scholar
  10. 26.
    Eliade, Myths, Dreams and Mysteries (London: Harvill, 1968), 245.Google Scholar
  11. 31.
    C. Jung, quoted in A. Dry, The Psychology of Jung (London: Allen and Unwin, 1961), 92.Google Scholar
  12. 33.
    Eliade, ‘Encounters at Ascona’, Papers from the Eranos Yearbooks Vol. 4, ed. Joseph Campbell (London: Bollingen, 1960), xix.Google Scholar
  13. 34.
    Eliade, The Myth of the Eternal Return (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1971), 3;Google Scholar
  14. Eliade, The Sacred and the Profane (New York: Harper and Row, 1961), 15, 37, 75.Google Scholar
  15. 42.
    Eliade, Myth and Reality (London: Allen and Unwin, 1964), 18.Google Scholar
  16. 57.
    Eliade, ‘Cosmogonic Myth and “Sacred History”’, Religious Studies 2 (1967): 173.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. 60.
    Eliade, Rites and Symbols of Initiation: The Mysteries of Birth and Rebirth (New York: Harper and Row, 1965), 173.Google Scholar
  18. 65.
    Anne de Waal Malefijit, Religion and Culture (New York: Knopf, 1968), 192–3.Google Scholar
  19. 68.
    S. G. F. Brandon, History, Time and Deity (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 1964), 73.Google Scholar
  20. 69.
    W. E. H. Stanner, ‘The Dreaming’, Reader in Comparative Religion, William Lessa and Evon Z. Vogt, eds (New York: Harper and Row, 1965), 270.Google Scholar
  21. 70.
    Tim Moore, ‘The Analysis of Stories’, The Theory of Myth, Adrian Cunningham, ed. (London: Sheed and Ward, 1973), 22–39.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Ivan Strenski 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ivan Strenski
    • 1
  1. 1.University of CaliforniaSanta BarbaraUSA

Personalised recommendations