Myth: A User’s Guide. In search of a new epistemology for literary rewritings of myths

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special issue of Interférences littéraires/Literaire interferenties: A Multilingual e-Journal of Literary Studies.
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This special issue of Interférences littéraires/Literaire interferenties aims to develop the most recent theoretical and methodological contributions regarding literary rewritings of myths. Up until the 1970s, critics accepted the conceptualization of myth put forth by philosophical and ethno-anthropological approaches; subsequently, however, various critical perspectives emerged which recognised distinct properties in the mythe littéraire and examined the relation between myth and literature in light of strictly literary epistemological categories. Starting in the 1990s, the idea that it was possible to identify a particular ‘essence’ in myth (even in literary myths) began to fall in disrepute and was replaced by the view that a rewritten myth should be interpreted in terms of its specific expressive and enunciatory properties. As Ute Heidmann underlines in her theory of differential comparison, reconstructing the mythological discourse of every rewriting ideally involves a literary epistemological approach but also bears in mind the contributions made by interdisciplinary research. Using Heidmann’s proposals as a springboard, this volume seeks to relaunch the theoretical and methodological debate on how to read and interpret the rewritings of myths in literary texts. The aim is to arrive at a series of critical views which encompass all the poetic and mythological facets of rewriting.

Proposals should include an abstract of approximately 300 words and a brief biography of the author, including academic affiliation and areas of research. Proposals should be sent to Franca Bruera (, Giulia Boggio Marzet ( and David Martens ( by 15 September 2014. The authors of the chosen texts will be notified by the 15th of October 2014. The articles should be 30,000-50,000 words in length (including spaces and footnotes) and must be submitted via email no later than 25 February 2015. More information can be found on

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