The Hero's Journey

Topics: Spider-Man, Hero, Marvel Team-Up Pages: 17 (2463 words) Published: March 26, 2014
The  Hero’s  Journey:
Archetypes and The Monomyth
1) ARCHETYPE - From the Greek word
“arkhetupos”  meaning  exemplary  or  ideal;;  an   original model or template after which other
things are patterned
- IN PSYCHOLOGY: Psychologist Carl
Jung’s  idea  of  universal archetypes
relates to the recurring pattern of
beliefs, situations, characters, stories
and/or symbols existing around the
world in the collective unconscious of

- A  “Perfect  Type”  of  something  upon  which   others are based AND/OR from which others are
Common Archetypes:
- The Child
- The Hero
- Great Mother
- Wise One
- The Damsel
- The Trickster
- The Betrayer
- The Destroyer
- The Rogue
- The Scoundrel
Extends to Cultural Traditions/Beliefs
- gods
- angels/demons
- appeasement/sacrifice/atonement

Mythologist Joseph Campbell took
Jung’s  idea  of  the  archetype and
applied it to mythologies from around
the  world,  calling  it  the  “monomyth”  or  
“the  hero’s  journey.”    The  monomyth  is  
a description of a basic, universal
pattern of characters, events and
symbols found in many/most myths,
stories, and religious narratives from
around the world.

- Prometheus (Grk) - Osiris (Egypt)
- Noah & Moses (Israel) - Buddha
- Mohammed - Jesus - Judas

Archetypes are images/symbols, storypatterns and/or character types which occur/reappear frequently in literary
narratives and create strong, often
unconscious associations and/or
connections in the reader

- HERO (Beowulf, King Arthur, Harry Potter)
- ANTIHERO (Sam Spade, Odysseus, Batman,
Spawn, The Lone Ranger, etc)
Dumbledor, Mr. Miaggi (Karate Kid),
- SHAPE SHIFTER (Prof. Snape, Ash)

2) EPIC - A long narrative poem that relates
the great deeds of a larger-than-life hero who
embodies the values of a particular society.
- EPIC HERO: larger-than-life
character doing mighty deeds. They
usually undertake a dangerous journey
or quest to supernatural realms to
achieve a goal. They are often
endowed with superior strength,
knowledge, and courage. They may
also carry within them some additional
special  “endowment”/power  or  some  

- The  “Fall”
- The Flood
- The Garden of Eden - The Betrayal
- God - Satan - Angels
- Spirits/Ghosts -

- Demons

- Homer’s  Illiad  &  Odyssey;;  Epic  of  Gilgamesh - Stories  of  “epic  proportion”  – Lord of the Rings; Stephen  King’s  “The  Stand;;”  
EPIC HERO – Odysseus, Superman, Indiana
Jones, Beowulf, King Arthur,

form of a supernatural blessing.
However, epic heroes also possess
human weakness and flaws.
3) MYTH - A traditional story that explains a
belief, custom, or mysterious natural
phenomenon. Most myths are connected
to/grow out of religious rituals and traditions,
and almost all of them involve the exploits of
gods and heroes.
4) MONOMYTH - The monomyth/ hero's
journey is a name given to the basic pattern
found in many narratives around the world.
This universal pattern is described by Joseph
Campbell in The Hero with a Thousand
In the monomyth, the hero starts in the
ordinary world, and receives a call to enter an
unusual world of strange powers and events.
If the hero accepts the call to enter this
strange world, the hero must face tasks and
trials. At its most intense, the hero must
survive a severe challenge, often with help
earned along the journey. If the hero
survives, the hero may achieve a great gift or
"boon." The hero must then decide whether
to return to the ordinary world with this boon.
If the hero does decide to return, the hero
often faces challenges on the return journey.
If the hero is successful in returning, the boon
or gift may be used to improve the world.
The  three  stages  of  the  Hero’s  
Journey are: Departure (sometimes called...
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