Structure and deconstruction in the Electra myth and beyond

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Felihkatubbe, Jason M.
Baldridge, Wilson

This research examines the ideas of myth and intertextuality. The Electra myth is utilized and various versions of the Electra myth are examined from different cultures through the world starting with the earliest known version of the Electra myth up to the 20th century before focusing on Jean-Paul Sartre's telling of the Electra myth, The Flies. A structural analysis according to Levi-Strauss is conducted on The Flies. A deconstruction according to Derrida is then performed not simply on the ideas presented by Sartre in The Flies, but on the entire idea of myth, itself. This deconstruction then leads to the idea that myth is nothing more than a metaphor, providing further evidence to Levi-Strauss' idea that all problems are linguistic ones. When viewed as existing within Derrida's idea of espacement one finds that myth isn't simply a metaphor, or the "beginning," but there exists a co-constitution of both myth and logos.

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Thesis (M.A.)--Wichita State University, Fairmount College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, Program of Liberal Studies