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الخرافة: مقدمة قصيرة جداً

3.25  ·  Rating details ·  509 ratings  ·  80 reviews
في هذه المقدمة القصيرة جدًّا، يقدم روبرت إيه سيجال للقارئ مجموعة المناهج التي ظهرت على مدار القرون القليلة الماضية في دراسة الخرافة. وتنبثق هذه المناهج من فروع معرفية عدة؛ كالأنثروبولوجيا وعلم الاجتماع وعلم النفس والنقد الأدبي والفلسفة والدراسات الدينية. وحلقة الوصل التي تربط بين هذه الفروع المعرفية جميعًا هي الأسئلة التي تطرحها: ما أصل الخرافة؟ وما وظيفتها؟ وما موضوعها؟ و ...more
ebook, 1st edition, 166 pages
Published 2014 by مؤسسة هنداوي للتعليم والثقافة (first published July 8th 2004)
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Tim Pendry
This is a disappointing introduction to mythology. It is a rather plodding book that might be termed 'wikipedia plus' - that is, it is a longer general survey with more authority than you might find online but suffering from it being only one person's perspective, albeit one of the most scholarly in the field.

Ultimately it is a mere enumeration of Western intellectual responses to myth, forced into a straitjacket of being reviewed through the prism of the various disciplines created by the West
...more
John
Jun 04, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: myth-legend
The two-star rating is based solely on my subjective judgment--I had a hard time finishing this short book. As the description and most reviews indicate, this is a book that describes the various theories about myth. I can't say I understand the various theories--and there are a lot of theories--and they are covered. I have a feeling I was not the proper audience for this book, and I can't say what the proper audience would be. Cliff notes for an upcoming academic conference or for a brown-nosin ...more
Ivy-Mabel Fling
Oct 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The idea of a very short introduction sounds great but it must be difficult to produce: longer than a Wikipedia article but shorter than a 'proper' book. This one is very ambitious and introduces (methinks) every scholar who has ever written about the function of myth. To make the best possible use of it, a reader would need to look into the works of all (or at least most of) the academics mentioned! That would take a couple of years! ...more
Ethan
No rating. Good reference book, but obviously not made to be "good" or "bad" reading. ...more
Daniel Wright
An extended meditation on the Greek myth of Adonis, this book touches on just about every discipline of the humanities imaginable. The result is a messy but magnificent patchwork of scholarship. Though I cannot think of anything in particular I took away, it was still highly illuminating.
Amany
Nov 14, 2014 rated it liked it
good book ruined by translation
Richard
The clue is in the title: Myth: A Very Short Introduction. Not "Myths..." or "Mythology..." or "Mythologies...". If you are looking for a very short introduction to any or all of these three, you will probably come away disappointed. The author of this book is quite upfront about this, stating in the very first sentence that "this book is an introduction not to myths but to approaches to myth, or theories of myth, and it is limited to modern theories". Within these boundaries (and I am not quali ...more
Ryan Denson
This small book provides a decent overview of several theoretical perspectives on myth. Segal helpfully divides up the chapters thematically and gives a broad definition of myth. A decent range of perspectives is covered, comparing theorists’ ideas on how myth relates to science, religion, politics, and more. Of course, for such a tiny volume, the theories explored here are by no means exhaustive. One potential drawback is the lack of background information for some theorists like Freud and Camp ...more
Jason Ray Ray Carney
This is an interesting though schematic overview of 19th and 20th century theories of mythology. The chapters are organized around themes, e.g. myth and psychology, myth and politics, myth and science, etc.. The myth of Adonis is the specimen/example myth that ties the chapters together. The author describes a specific theorist of myth and then explains (and sometimes speculates) about how that theorist might interpret the myth of Adonis. Accordingly, know that this book is not a chronological o ...more
Cris Edwards
Mar 18, 2020 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I tend to really like the VSI series but this one frustrated me so much that I couldn't read it all. It's very focused on the opinions of old white men [Campbell, Camus, et. al.] and, apparently, the myths, and theories of myth, from anyone else are not worthy of mention. The conclusion chapter diverts into a weird rant about how movie stars are our modern gods, but they are fallible, such as Robert Downey Junior being arrested for drug use and Rock Hudson had AIDS: yes, these are actual example ...more
Brad Needham
I read this book in hopes of getting what the title promised: an introduction to the theories of Myth. Unfortunately, the book reads like the Cliff Notes to a book I haven't read: it lacks enough detail to be useful on its own. I also found the author's editorializing about some, but not all, theorists to be intrusive.

The most I've gotten out of this book is a reading list, which could have been conveyed in a few pages.
...more
Des Small
Segal is a scrupulous conveyor of the metagossip of who says what about myth and especially each other, but I didn't get a strong feeling of how most of the theories worked (although he is good on Levi-Strauss, who does have a theory that does some work), and he casts his net wider than my interests run (he is a Jungian himself, so it is hardly avoidable).

...more
Rachel
Nov 22, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Dull

This was a boring, short over view of theories on the origin and purpose of myth. The writing was not very engaging and I doubt I absorbed much even with such a short read.
Nick
Jan 15, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
As usual, the AVSI series has proved to be both concise and useful. You have no idea how rare that is in Classics 😂
Crystal Karre
I have thought about this from time to time and found it interesting. It actually answered some questions I had and gave me more to think about.
Steven  Godby
Jan 26, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: myth
The shortness of the book has been demonized by its density.
Valerie Brett
This was a thorough (as far as I can tell) lit review of western (white male) theories of myth, but that was not was I was expecting, so I was a bit disappointed.
Maan Kawas
Oct 21, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Excellent book!
Hank Hoeft
This is a quick survey of the history of theories about myth, not a primer on mythology itself, broken down into chapters on myth and science, myth and philosophy, myth and religion, myth and ritual, myth and psychology, myth and structure, and myth and politics. What struck me about all this is the infinite capacity of the human mind to construct theories that are intricate and complex, but nonetheless flawed in rather obvious ways, but are still taken seriously by others who study myth. It was ...more
Nikki
Jan 01, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mythology
Well, don't let the title fool you. I would not call this "A VERY short introduction" simply because it's 140 pages in very small font. Oh, & it's not so much an introduction to myth but to myth-theory. Now that I've got that out of the way... I would like to say this is a great book. It is extremely comprehensive looking at a variety of theorists from late 1800's to present day, including the all-important Jung, Campbell, and Freud. Segal introduces different theories on myth, but is not afraid ...more
Carl
Sep 16, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Beginners in the study of mythology
Shelves: mythology
This is a beautifully short and easy to follow introduction to the different theoretical approaches taken to the study of myth. The 5 star rating might be a tad high, as this book isn't exactly adding anything earth shattering to the field, and there are places where I thought things could have been presented a bit differently or more clearly, but overall this is an excellent presentation for the new comer who wants a quick yet comprehensive overview of the field. Also good for the more advanced ...more
Gabriel Clarke
Sep 25, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: finished-in-2015
As I start to dig into myth properly again for the first time in quite some years, I've been reading this as a reminder of previous explorations, a checklist for new ones and to provide a sceptical map of a territory I've most recently encountered through decidedly less-than-sceptical sources. It's 142 pages of actual text and does all of the above admirably. Don't expect your favourites to get deeply considered treatment here - (slightly stodgy) brevity and (when it comes to the likes of Campbe ...more
Lesley Visutsiri
I had an expectation for this book that unfortunately wasn't realized. I was expecting a book about what myth is and how we can use it. This book was more about the scholars of myth and how they approach it. I think the author was a little too opinionated for this instead of allowing the reader to come up with their own beliefs and ideas. ...more
Anthony Buckley
An elegantly written book, giving a readable but scholarly introduction to the main theories of myth. In effect, one has a potted introduction to some of the great names of modern culture Tylor, Frazer, Frye, Jung, Kenneth Burke, Propp, Malinowski, Cassirer, Freud, Bultmann, Eliade, Lévi-Strauss - but not just these - all refracted through the topic of mythology.
Chris Percival
Sep 14, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition


Not a compendium of myths, but an overview of the various ways in which myth has been studied. Like all the books in this series, it offers a great way-in to the subject, mixing seemingly fair evaluation and explanation of various angles and takes on the subject, with the particular opinions of the author.
Kathy
I don't think this is a very good introduction to myth theory - mostly because of the way in which it's organised, though I also think that it is clumsily written. However, it is the best of the most accessible intros to myth theory; if not, sadly, the only one.

I much prefer Segal's other book: Theorizing on myth. It's not an introduction but it worked fine for me to encounter it first.
...more
Michael
This was not exactly what I was expecting. While the information presented in this was interesting, I wanted to learn about myths instead of the different theoretical approaches/responses to myths. I feel like the organization was a little weird, I was tired of a theorist being introduced only to be told that they would be discussed in a later chapters.
Kristi
Jan 03, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction
Lots of information, presented in a compact and clear format. I used this book to supplement my knowledge of myth analysis and theory, as well as to find clear-cut details about significant scholars whose own work goes right over my head.
Ευλαμπία Τσιρέλη
A very clear and comprehensive study on Myth. A precious tool for anyone who wants to learn about myth and expand his academic or personal interest. I keep it as a counselor every time I write or read something relevant.
Brittney Martinez
Jun 22, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: grad-school
The book is as advertised, a brief overview of theories that academics have about myths. You get good insight to the beliefs of a wide range of academics and can choose to pressure a love of thought more in depth with another title.
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A Million More Pages: Myth: A Very Short Introduction: Jun 9 3 14 Jun 14, 2015 09:37AM  

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