Archetypes_2011 by lanyuehua


What you never knew that you already know!
                         Synopsis of Star Wars: A New Hope

Luke Skywalker is an orphan living with his uncle and aunt in the remote wilderness
of Tatooine. He is rescued from aliens by wise, bearded Ben Kenobi, who turns out
to be a Jedi Knight.

Ben reveals to Luke that Luke's father was also a Jedi Knight, and was the best pilot
he had ever seen. Luke is also instructed in how to use the Jedi light sabre as he too
trains to become a Jedi.

Luke has many adventures in the galaxy and makes new friends such as Han Solo
and Princess Leia. In the course of these adventures, he distinguishes himself as a
top X-wing pilot in the battle of the Death Star, making the direct hit that secures the
Rebel victory against the forces of the evil Empire.

Luke also sees off the threat of Darth Vader, who we know murdered his uncle and

In the finale, Luke and his new friends receive medals of valor.
              Synopsis of Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone

Harry Potter is an orphan living with his uncle and aunt in the remote wilderness of
Suburbia. He is rescued from muggles by wise, bearded Hagrid, who turns out to be
a wizard.

Hagrid reveals to Harry that Harry's father was also a wizard, and was the best
Quidditch player he had ever seen. Harry is also instructed in how to use a magic
wand as he too trains to become a wizard.

Harry has many adventures in Hogwarts and makes new friends such as Ron and
Hermione. In the course of these adventures, he distinguishes himself as a top
Quidditch Seeker in the Quidditch match, making the catch that secures the
Gryffindor victory against the forces of the evil Slytherin.

Harry also sees off the threat of Lord Voldemort, who we know murdered his

In the finale, Harry and his new friends win the House Cup.
                        Synopsis of Lord of the Rings

Frodo is an orphan living with his uncle in the remote gardens of the Shire. He is
rescued from the Black Riders by wise, bearded Gandalf the Grey, who turns out to
be a Wizard.

Gandalf reveals to Frodo that Frodo’s uncle was also a ring bearer, and was the best
ring bearer he had ever seen. Frodo is also instructed in how to destroy the ring as
he too trains to become a ring bearer.

Frodo has many adventures in Middle Earth and makes new friends such as Merry,
Pippin, Sam, and Strider. In the course of these adventures, he distinguishes himself
as an admirable ring bearer, carrying the ring to the elven stronghold of Rivendell
and eventually to Mordor and Mount Doom.

Frodo also sees off the threat of Sauron and Saruman the White, who we know tried
to murder Gandalf.

In the finale, Frodo and his friends receive medals of valor.
• Archetype – a primordial image, character,
  story, symbol, situation or pattern that
  recurs throughout literature enough to
  become a universal concept.

• From Greek meaning “original pattern from
  which things are made.”
           Theory of Collective
The term archetype was brought into literature
  through the psychology of Carl Jung.

Jung believed that individuals had the history of the
  entire human race stored in their brain. It is
  collective because the memory comes from all an
  individuals ancestors, and it is unconscious
  because we are not aware of the memories stored.
• According to Jung’s theory, this is why
  archetypal characters can be found in so
  many cultures, and be recognized
  consciously or unconsciously while reading
• They are not individual, but the part we share with all
• They are the inherited part of being human which
  connects us to our past.
• They are universal. From the Roman gladiator to the
  astronaut, they remain the same.
• Their appearance in diverse cultures cannot be
  explained, as many cultures are so separated by
  geography and time.
• Archetypes are recurrent, appearing in slightly
  altered forms to take present day situations and
  relate them to the past to find meaning in a
  contemporary world.
THE HERO: The protagonist. The hero must
  successfully pass through several stages in his quest
  to accomplish something for the greater good. Many
  times a prophecy of some type has foretold of the
  future hero’s birth and adventures. He/She is
  destined to be our hero. (Oedipus, Moses, Arthur,
  Robin Hood, Beowulf, & Frodo)

INITIATES: These are the young heroes who, prior to
  their quest, must endure some training and
  ceremony. They are usually innocent and often wear
  white (Daniel in The Karate Kid, Princess Leia, Luke

MENTORS: These individuals serve as teachers or
 counselors to the initiates. Sometimes they work as
 role models and often serve as father or mother
 figure. (Gandalf to Frodo, Obi Wan to Luke) Mentor-
 Pupil relationship: mentor teaches by examples the
 skills necessary to survive the quest.

  spirited away as a young man and raised by
  strangers. He later returns to his home and heritage
  where he is a stranger who can see new problems
  and new solutions (Tarzan, Dorothy from The Wizard
  of Oz, Mr. Spock, Luke).
   Luke and Obi-wan are good
examples of the initiate and mentor
THE KNIGHT: This character is a member of an exclusive group
  that focuses on things such as spirituality, wise teachings, or a
  code of honor. They make personal sacrifices and protect
  someone, or something.

LOYAL RETAINERS: These individuals are somewhat like
  servants who are heroic themselves. Their duty is to protect
  the hero and reflect the nobility of the hero (Sam in The Lord of
  the Rings, Watson to Sherlock Holmes).

HUNTING GROUP OF COMPANIONS: These loyal companions
  are willing to face any number of perils in order to be together
  (Robin Hood and his Merry Men, The Fellowship of the Ring).

FRIENDLY BEAST: This shows that nature is on the side of the
  hero (Toto, Lassie, Chewbacca).
The fellowship seen here is a good example of
            hunting companions.

  redeemable devil figure that is saved by the nobility or love of
  the hero (Scrooge, Beast, any romance novel hero).

DEVIL FIGURE (TEMPTER): Evil incarnate, this character offers
  worldly goods, fame, or knowledge to the protagonist in
  exchange for possession of the soul (Satan).

EARTH MOTHER: Symbolic of abundance and fertility, this
  character traditionally offers spiritual and emotional
  nourishment to those with whom she comes in contact. She is
  often depicted in earth colors with a large chest and hips
  symbolic of her childbearing capabilities (Mother Nature,
  Mammy in Gone with the Wind).
TEMPTRESS: Characterized by sensuous beauty, this woman is
  one to whom the hero is physically attracted and who ultimately
  brings about his downfall (Guinevere).

THE OUTCAST: This is a figure who is banished from a social
  group for some crime (real or imagined) against his fellow man.
  The outcast is usually destined to become a wanderer from
  place to place (some cowboys, Cain).

DAMSEL IN DISTRESS: This is the vulnerable woman who must
  be rescued by the hero. She often is used as a trap to ensnare
  the unsuspecting hero (Guinevere, Snow White, Sleeping

THE GODDESS: A good and beautiful woman, often a maiden,
  usually fair-haired and skinned. Religious or intellectual
  overtones, often gives some form of supernatural gifts or
  support to the hero and companions.
THE SOULMATE – the princess or “beautiful lady” – incarnation of
  inspiration and spiritual fulfillment.

THE UNFAITHFUL WIFE – woman married to a man she sees as
  dull or distant and is attracted to a more virile or interesting

THE PLATONIC IDEAL – This woman is a source of inspiration
  and a spiritual ideal, for which the protagonist or author has an
  intellectual rather than a physical attraction.

CREATURE OF NIGHTMARE – monster usually summoned from
  the deepest, darkest part of the human psyche to threaten the
  lives of the hero. Often a desecration of the human body.
The Predator and Gollum are great
   examples of the creature of
        Multiple Archetypes
Characters can represent more than one
   - Darth Vader is both a Creature of
     Nightmare and an Evil Figure With a
     Good Heart.
  - Aragorn is an Outcast, Knight, and Hero.
THE QUEST: This motif describes the search for
 someone or some talisman which, when found
 and brought back, will restore fertility to a
 wasted land. (The Lion King, Aragorn’s return to
 the throne)

THE TASK: To save the kingdom, to win the fair
 lady, to identify himself so that he may reassume
 his rightful position, the hero must perform some
 nearly superhuman deed. (Beowulf slays
 Grendel, Frodo must arrive at Rivendale.)
THE INITIATION: This archetype usually takes the
  form of an initiation into adult life. The adolescent
  comes into his/her maturity with new awareness and
  problems along with new hope for the community.
  This awakening is often the climax of the story.
  (Growing Up: Huckleberry Finn, the hobbits.)

THE JOURNEY: The journey sends the hero in search
  for some truth or information necessary to restore
  fertility to the kingdom. Usually the hero descends
  into a realm of psychological hell and is forced to
  discover the blackest truths, quite often concerning
  his own faults. Once the hero is at this lowest point,
  he must accept personal responsibility to return to
  the world of the living. (The Odyssey, The
  Canterbury Tales, The Fellowship of the Rings.
      SITUATION ARCHETYPES - continued
THE FALL: This archetype describes a descent from a higher to a
  lower state of being. The fall is often accompanied by expulsion
  from a kind of paradise as penalty for disobedience and moral
  transgression. (Adam and Eve, Gollum)

DEATH AND REBIRTH: The most common of all situation
  archetypes, this motif grows out of the parallel between the cycle of
  nature and the cycle of life. Thus, morning and springtime
  represent birth, youth, or rebirth; evening and winter suggest old
  age or death.

NATURE vs. MECHANISTIC WORLD: Nature is good while
  technology and society are often evil. (Walden, The Terminator,
THE UNHEALABLE WOUND: This wound is either physical or
  psychological and cannot be healed fully. This wound also
  indicates a loss of innocence. These wounds always ache and
  often drive the sufferer to desperate measures. (Frodo’s
  shoulder, Ahab’s wooden leg)

THE MAGIC WEAPON: The magic weapon symbolizes the
  extraordinary quality of the hero because no one else can wield
  the weapon or use it to its full potential. It is usually given by a
  mentor figure (Light Sabers, Thor’s hammer)

HAVEN vs. WILDERNESS: Places of safety contrast sharply
  against the dangerous wilderness. Heroes are often sheltered
  for a time to regain health and resources. (the Batcave,
  Camelot, Rivendale)
WATER vs. DESERT: Because water is necessary to life and growth,
 it commonly appears as a birth or rebirth symbol. Water is used in
 baptismal services, which solemnizes spiritual births. Similarly, the
 appearance of rain in a work of literature can suggest a character’s
 spiritual birth.

  exhibit wisdom and understanding of situations instinctively as
  opposed to those supposedly in charge. Loyal retainers often exhibit
  this wisdom as they accompany them on the journey. (e.g. Sam
  from The Lord of the Rings, Alfred the Butler to Batman)

BATTLE BETWEEN GOOD AND EVIL: Obviously, the battle between
  two primal forces. (The forces of Sauron and those of Middle Earth
  in The Lord of the Rings, Satan and God in Paradise Lost, any
  western, most cartoons.)
The Natural Cycle: day to night, spring to winter, youth to elderly

light = goodness
darkness = evil

girl = innocence
crone = evil knowledge, impending death

images of spring = rebirth; comedy
images of summer = life; romance
images of autumn = dying; tragedy
images of winter = death; satire and irony

   A symbol may represent good or evil, depending on its context. A
   tree is usually a symbol of life—but not if the author uses it as the
   setting for a lynching, or if it is turned into a crucifix.
Black = protection, death, evil, mystery, chaos, the unknown

White = purity, innocence, holiness, light, timelessness

Red = passion, emotion, charisma, creativity, blood, life, courage

Pink = innocence, childhood, feminine things

Yellow = cowardice, health, sun, enlightenment, wisdom

Green = growth, fertility, renewal spring, things that grow, hope

Blue = loyalty, peace, calmness, and spirituality, sadness

Purple = royalty, sacred things

Brown = mother earth, friendship, strength

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