Story Quote #10 (Joseph Campbell, Give Me A Break!!)

Jcflogo“All of the great mythologies and much of the mythic story-telling of the world are from the male point of view. When I was writing The Hero with a Thousand Faces and wanted to bring female heroes in, I had to go to the fairy tales. These were told by women to children, you know, and you get a different perspective. It was the men who got involved in spinning most of the great myths. The women were too busy; they had too damn much to do to sit around thinking about stories.” —Joseph Campbell

This is also the excuse that is often given for why there are few great women painters or composers before the 20th Century. We were too busy fixing dinner!

Fairy tales? I assume Mr. Campbell never thought to ask his mother, aunts, grandmother, etc. about his own family stories. Most families have a foundation myth, a story about how they came to be where they are, and those stories are largely preserved /retold by women.


Filed under fairytale, Family Stories, History, Old Storytelling Traditions, Story Quote, Uncategorized

4 responses to “Story Quote #10 (Joseph Campbell, Give Me A Break!!)

  1. What gets me about these excuses given by even the most brilliant of men as to why women are so often left at the edge of the spotlight, their stories never acknowledged appropriately, is that they BELIEVE their own crap. The thing is, these heroes seldom look down when they are standing on someone else’s shoulders enjoying the view!

  2. Huh…it seems to me that “fairy tales” are pretty mythical. Especially if you read/hear them before they were “sanitized” by interpreters such as the Grimm brothers and the Disney Corp.

  3. I agree Disney, like Joseph Campbell, don’t get it.

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