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Newly Published: The Hero’s Quest and the Cycles of Nature

New on our bookshelf today:

The Hero’s Quest and the Cycles of Nature: An Ecological Interpretation of World Mythology
Rachel S. McCoppin

This examination of the heroic journey in world mythology casts the protagonist as a personification of nature—a “botanical hero” one might say—who begins the quest in a metaphorical seed-like state, then sprouts into a period of verdant strength. But the hero must face a mythic underworld where he or she contends with mortality and sacrifice—embracing death as a part of life. For centuries, humans have sought superiority over nature, yet the botanical hero finds nothing is lost by recognizing that one is merely a part of nature. Instead, a cyclical promise of continuous life is realized, in which no element fully disappears, and the hero’s message is not to dwell on death.