Have story, will travel

I like the idea behind this map—which charts the evolution of four near-archetypal literary tales (Faust, Leviathan, Oedipus, Pygmalion) across space and time. It reminds me of the wonderful encyclopedias that academic folklorists compile of recurring motifs in folktales, myths and legends. The end result suffers, alas, from too few data-points and too many lines: the flight-tracks imply a causality and certainty of a single route that isn’t always the case from story to story.

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from “Telling Tales: The evolution of four stories,” by Haisam Hussein, Lapham’s Quarterly, Spring 2010 :: via Strange Maps

Originally published at culture-making.com.

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