News from The Arthur Holt Librarydeveloper
“Gaia visited her daughter Mnemosyne, who was busy being unpronounceable.”
– Stephen Fry: Mythos, The Greek Myths Re-told
On face value some mythological stories can appear to border on the bizarre. Fantastical stories that tell of the world’s most beautiful women being hatched from eggs, or crops born out of dragon’s teeth can be decidedly difficult to digest. However, when looking beyond the surface, what can be found is a window into the norms, values and mores of different cultural groups. As Rollo May once put it, “A myth is a way of making sense in a senseless world. Myths are narrative patterns that give significance to our existence.”
This week in The Arthur Holt Library, Year 7 English students have enjoyed a delightful dive into the mythological world. They discovered that, interestingly, a great number of common threads can be found in myths from vastly different cultures. Stories of chaos at the beginning of time, the Earth Mother who brings order and life or the Sky Father who is both respected and feared can be traced across the world. In spite of these commonalities, students were challenged to understand how each of these threads were woven into the particular cultural tapestry of those people who created them.
Choosing from over 50 stories drawn from the library’s collection, the boys read, interpreted and shared thoughts about their myths, with the end goal of creating a mood board showing an original representation of a character within their story. Later this term students will be back to engage with guided research into the cultural, geographical and historical context of their myths to support their work.
Reading widely allows students to experience the particular kind of joy that comes from learning new things about the world. Whether it is through myths, or the world of crime fiction being explored by Year 8, The Arthur Holt Library provides a home for the many curious minds at Trinity.