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Within these stages there are several archetypes that the hero or heroine may follow including the call to adventure which they may initially refuse , supernatural aid, proceeding down a road of trials, achieving a realization about themselves or an apotheosis , and attaining the freedom to live through their quest or journey. Campbell offered examples of stories with similar themes such as Krishna , Buddha , Apollonius of Tyana , and Jesus.

Occidental Mythology , Campbell writes "It is clear that, whether accurate or not as to biographical detail, the moving legend of the Crucified and Risen Christ was fit to bring a new warmth, immediacy, and humanity, to the old motifs of the beloved Tammuz , Adonis , and Osiris cycles. The actions that fall into such a hero's sphere include:. Propp distinguished between seekers and victim-heroes. A villain could initiate the issue by kidnapping the hero or driving him out; these were victim-heroes.

On the other hand, an antagonist could rob the hero, or kidnap someone close to him, or, without the villain's intervention, the hero could realize that he lacked something and set out to find it; these heroes are seekers. Victims may appear in tales with seeker heroes, but the tale does not follow them both.

No history can be written without consideration of the lengthy list of recipients of national medals for bravery , populated by firefighters, policemen and policewomen, ambulance medics and ordinary have-a-go heroes. The philosopher Hegel gave a central role to the "hero", personalized by Napoleon , as the incarnation of a particular culture's Volksgeist , and thus of the general Zeitgeist. Thomas Carlyle 's On Heroes, Hero Worship and the Heroic in History also accorded a key function to heroes and great men in history.

Carlyle centered history on the biography of a few central individuals such as Oliver Cromwell or Frederick the Great. His heroes were political and military figures, the founders or topplers of states. His history of great men included geniuses good and, perhaps for the first time in historical study, evil. Explicit defenses of Carlyle's position were rare in the second part of the 20th century.

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Most in the philosophy of history school contend that the motive forces in history can best be described only with a wider lens than the one that Carlyle used for his portraits. For example, Karl Marx argued that history was determined by the massive social forces at play in " class struggles ", not by the individuals by whom these forces are played out.

After Marx, Herbert Spencer wrote at the end of the 19th century: Before he can remake his society, his society must make him. The Annales School , led by Lucien Febvre , Marc Bloch and Fernand Braudel , would contest the exaggeration of the role of individual subjects in history. Indeed, Braudel distinguished various time scales, one accorded to the life of an individual, another accorded to the life of a few human generations, and the last one to civilizations , in which geography , economics and demography play a role considerably more decisive than that of individual subjects.

Among noticeable events in the studies of the role of the hero and Great man in history one should mention Sydney Hook 's book The Hero in History. Miller , The Heroine's Text: Readings in the French and English Novel, — In the epoch of globalization an individual can still change the development of the country and of the whole world so this gives reasons to some scholars to suggest returning to the problem of the role of the hero in history from the viewpoint of modern historical knowledge and using up-to-date methods of historical analysis.

Within the frameworks of developing counterfactual history , attempts are made to examine some hypothetical scenarios of historical development. The hero attracts much attention because most of those scenarios are based on the suppositions: If the term "heroine" exists, [ clarification needed ] "hero" is often the predominantly used term even though its neutrality can be put into question. The definitions of the heroine often refer back to the one of the hero, but sometimes insinuate that their deeds are of less value, or were obtained only thanks to their love of God or a country or of a man.


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Therefore, implying that an external explanation for the extraordinary nature of her deeds is needed to justify them. The warrior women is considered unholy, unnatural. These figures tend to be erased because they don't fit in the feminine values they are supposed to represent. Acts of heroism coming from women are acceptable, during specific time, like when men are at war, during times of crisis, but they are otherwise often seen as suspicious.

Moreover, women are often not individualized, but praised as a group for heroic deeds. Women in the military were often subordinated to tasks less likely to be praised than armed combat, and are rather praised for their courage as a general force, nurses during wartime are a good example of this phenomenon. If their story gets told, they are made to fit in the acceptable script. Their story is told in a way as to match the expectations of femininity ex: So the set of strengths in which a heroine could historically express her value are overall not the same and perceived as less valuable than their masculine counterpart.

In general, the cultural repertoire of heroic stories requires different qualities for each gender. The contrast of the ideal narrative line pits the autonomous ego-enhancing hero single-handedly and single-heartedly progressing toward a goal versus the long-suffering, selfless, socially embedded heroine, being moved in many directions, lacking the tenacious loyalty demanded of a quest.

If they get mentioned in history, the way their story is told also differs from their male counterpart, they are generally portrayed as young and beautiful, their actions are limited to a short time lapse in opposition to the possibility of a long heroic career for male heroes, underlying feelings that led to their heroic acts are underlined, overall less details about their life are kept and emphasis is put over their tragic death. Not to forget that heroes and heroines are part of a social construct, their history is told and changes throughout history to serve different purposes of memory, propaganda according to diverse social, political or religious evolutions.

The word "hero" or "heroine", in modern times, is sometimes used to describe the protagonist or the love interest of a story, a usage which can conflict with the superhuman expectations of heroism. In modern literature the hero is more and more a problematic concept. In , for example, William Makepeace Thackeray gave Vanity Fair the subtitle A Novel without a Hero , and imagined a world in which no sympathetic character was to be found.

They were the Heroes of Old, X-Men of renown/Widow's Son!

Even the most sympathetic characters, like Captain Dobbin, are susceptible to weakness, as he is often narcissistic and melancholy. The larger-than-life hero is a more common feature of fantasy particularly in comic-books and epic fantasy than more realist works. The superhero genre is a multibillion-dollar industry that includes comic books, movies, toys and video games. Superheroes usually possess extraordinary talents and powers that no living human could ever emulate.


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  • The superhero stories often pit a super villain against the hero, with the hero fighting the crime caused by the super villain. Social psychology has begun paying attention to heroes and heroism. Zeno Franco and Philip Zimbardo point out differences between heroism and altruism, and they offer evidence that observers' perceptions of unjustified risk plays a role above and beyond risk type in determining the ascription of heroic status.

    An evolutionary psychology explanation for heroic risk-taking is that it is a costly signal demonstrating the ability of the hero. It can be seen as one form of altruism for which there are also several other evolutionary explanations. Roma Chatterji has suggested that the hero or more generally protagonist is first and foremost a symbolic representation of the person who is experiencing the story while reading, listening or watching; [35] thus the relevance of the hero to the individual relies a great deal on how much similarity there is between the two.

    One reason for the hero-as-self interpretation of stories and myths is the human inability to view the world from any perspective but a personal one. Then when they tasted of the tree, that which was hidden from them of their shame private parts became manifest to them and they began to stick together the leaves of Paradise over themselves in order to cover their shame.

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    And their Lord called out to them saying: We have wronged ourselves. If You forgive us not, and bestow not upon us Your Mercy, we shall certainly be of the losers. O Children of Adam! We have bestowed raiment upon you to cover yourselves screen your private parts, etc. And indeed, We created man from sounding clay of altered black smooth mud. And the jinn, We created aforetime from the smokeless flame of fire.

    So, the angels prostrated themselves, all of them together. What is your reason for not being among the prostrators? Give me then respite till the Day they the dead will be resurrected. Because you misled me, I shall indeed adorn the path of error for them mankind on the earth, and I shall mislead them all. Verily, this is an enemy to you and to your wife. So let him not get you both out of Paradise , so that you be distressed in misery. Verily, you have a promise from Us that you will never be hungry therein nor naked.

    And you will suffer not from thirst therein nor from the sun's heat. Shall I lead you to the Tree of Eternity and to a kingdom that will never waste away? Then they both ate of the tree, and so their private parts appeared to them, and they began to stick on themselves the leaves from Paradise for their covering. Thus did Adam disobey his Lord, so he went astray. Then his Lord chose him, and turned to him with forgiveness, and gave him guidance. Then if there comes to you guidance from Me, then whoever follows My Guidance shall neither go astray, nor fall into distress and misery.

    Remember when your Lord said to the angels: So when I have fashioned him and breathed into him his soul created by Me, then you fall down prostrate to him. So the angels prostrated themselves, all of them: What prevents you from prostrating yourself to one whom I have created with Both My Hands. Are you too proud to fall prostrate to Adam or are you one of the high exalted?

    Give me then respite till the Day the dead are resurrected. You are of those allowed respite This was according to the Quranic verses. Other that that what I posted before was most probably from Sufi sayings. They obeyed Allah in the beginning but after sometime they started disobeying him. So he asked the permission of Allah to bring him to the skies. Jan 9, Messages: Welcome to CR farhan! I appreciate your contribution here, it does shed a little different light on the subject.

    I know very little of Jinns, only the popularized myths concerning "genies". Quahom, I don't have my Bible handy in front of me, but I have wondered on this subject before as well. I also seem to recall the Bible stating that a fresh or continuing influx began after the flood, which gave rise to the race of giants that included Goliath at a later date.

    I have also heard it said that the wars the Israelites fought coming out of the wilderness of Sinai were predominantly against this "fallen" race. I seem to recall mention of the iron bedstead of Og, one of their kings, being in existence at some time in the history of Israel, probably as some form of reminder.

    That "angels" once again if not always will mate with humans. In looking for myths concerning giants, I haven't found anything archeologically to support the stories directly. But I have stumbled on a couple of folktales that hint at giants living among humans. Supposedly during the time of King Authur, one of his chief allies was a man known as Lord Cornwell, who it is said used to hunt giants for sport in the south of England. Another story I read claimed a burial chamber deep in a cave in the Himalayas that contained the bodies of a father, mother and son, all of whom were well over ten feet tall.

    An interesting side note concerns the writer Jules Verne. I find it interesting that most all of his stories, which were pure fantasy when he wrote them over a hundred years ago, have come true in some form. Like Submarines and Moon landings. He based his stories on the known sciences of his day. The only story I am aware of that has not come true, is "Journey to the Center of the Earth.

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    Since his speculations were based on science of the day, and many things in that story are supported by geology and fossil findings, I cannot help but wonder from what he drew his idea of giants. Giants have a significance in the human psyche. Myths like "Jack and the beanstalk" keep the significance alive to us, generation after generation.

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    And since myth does not necessarily mean "false," that is, truths are sometimes painted over with myth , I cannot help but wonder if the concept of giants and all they represent have some basis in fact, and not merely a symbolic representation of something significant to our collective psyche. Farhan's contribution shows me the "myths" of giants reach beyond Western or Christian folklore, as the Himalaya story already showed me the reach into Buddhism.

    I wonder if Vaj might have anything to add towards this discussion? Just catching up on a couple of points. Some say the Nephilim were actually the Neanderthals. Or perhaps they were those who became leaders of ancient civilizations. You are commenting using your WordPress. You are commenting using your Twitter account. You are commenting using your Facebook account. Notify me of new comments via email. Stories of Jesus in Islamic tradition. Categories Bible , Uncategorized.