Traditional Heroism And Character Analysis Of Jason And The Argonauts

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Jason and the Argonauts is interesting in it’s approach to traditional heroism and narrative theming. So Jason is the center of the myth, hence the name. He was the son of King Aeson whose half-brother Pelias overthrew him and slayed his progeny, sparing his brother for some reason. Jason’s mother protected him by sending him to be raised by a centaur and 20 years later, Jason goes to take the throne. Well there’s the first element, a call to adventure, first of two in a way. On the way we find another element of the Hero’s Journey: some supernatural aid. The goddess Hera disguised as an old woman asked Jason to help her across a river; he does and loses a sandal in the process. How is this aid? Years earlier an oracle prophesied to Pelias…show more content…
But there is barely a test for Jason presented here. The fleece presents the reward after an ultimate test. Usually in the hero’s journey the test would require some application that shows the character’s growth, normally in this type of story it would be in combat or cleverness. There’s nothing of worth that Jason does here, in what’s supposed to be his ordeal. Earlier in one of the adventures, Jason mistakenly lands in an island filled with giants. It ends in disaster, many of the sailors get lost, Herakles has to fight off many raiding giants, and the crew accidentally kill the king. This mistake could be a set up to show growth as an out-of-his-element Jason can contrast with a later Jason that has learned from his mistake, it doesn't happen here. Earlier I mentioned Hera as a form of supernatural aid, I consider many of the gods to be in their own space creating a sort of dichotomy between the women as non-goddesses in the story versus the full goddesses. One could easily point out the manner in which gods can do much of the heavy lifting in these myths. Here is why the character of Medea, her role in the story, is…show more content…
It is also very malleable, I spoke of Hera and Medea in the context of supernatural aid. Entering the unknown is simple for myths of undefined, or underdefined, rules. Going to and fro a place is also common excluding tales that focus on wanderers. If we were to look at the hero’s journey from the viewpoint of Medea from here on out, the primary difficulty with this would be the fact that the tale is concerned with Jason. But like I said, this strays from the archetypical journey not only in Jason’s test but from then on. Let’s suggest Medea’s journey would start with wanting to aid Jason, her ultimate reward could be marriage and considering the societal factors this could be the perceived ideal especially with Jason homebound to become king. Medea would have no supernatural aid as she is herself a form of one but for the sake of stretching this analysis we can attribute her herbs. After killing her brother and throwing the pieces to the sea in order to distract her father king and flee(nothing says she had to be good), Medea continues to play an active role in the myth further overshadowing Jason’s deeds, or what little there

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