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Theseus Revisited: Commitment through Myth

  • Pamela A. Genova
Chapter

Abstract

Gide’s relationship to the extraordinarily rich world of Greek mythology is a complex and ambivalent subject, and many modern critical studies have explored various aspects of this relationship, from its presence as a constant aesthetic referent to its potential as a unique discursive framework.2 Indeed, Gide’s interest in myth, as with his attraction to Christian motifs, represents a consistent force throughout his life and a fundamental referential thread throughout his textual corpus, from the 1891 Traité du Narcisse through the 1946 Thésée. Gide employed a mythic backdrop to explore a variety of generic forms, composing mythologically based texts within such forms as the récit, the dramatic text, the sotie, the treatise, the essay, and the Socratic dialogue. References to Greco-Roman myth abound as well in his correspondence and his personal papers, in his conversations and his lectures. Clearly Gide felt a deep attachment to the dynamic system of the ancient modes of thought and art; he obviously discovered in the myths of antiquity something more powerful than merely an evocative historical framework or a provocative narrative structure.

Keywords

Sexual Identity Socratic Dialogue Greek Mythology Greek Myth Ancient 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.

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Copyright information

© Tom Conner 2000

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  • Pamela A. Genova

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