Mean As Custard (calico_pye) wrote,
Mean As Custard

  • Music:

Leda and the Swan by W.B. Yeats

Because of the heat of the past few days, I have not been studying much - though I have been working on a friend's Etsy/Twitter account, trying to launch his stuff.  As I am doing this as an initial 'starter kit' (he will have to do the rest), I have had a chance to settle down and address some of my major dissertation research.

I have been reading through Angela Carter's The Magic Toyshop and its disturbing themes, landing upon the Greek tale of 'Leda and the Swan'. Zeus takes the form of a swan and seduces/rapes Leda - leading her to have his two children.  There is also a poem by W.B Yeats on the matter.

A sudden blow: the great wings beating still
Above the staggering girl, her thighs caressed
By the dark webs, her nape caught in his bill,
He holds her helpless breast upon his breast.

How can those terrified vague fingers push
The feathered glory from her loosening thighs?
And how can body, laid in that white rush,
But feel the strange heart beating where it lies?

A shudder in the loins engenders there
The broken wall, the burning roof and tower
And Agamemnon dead.
                    Being so caught up,
So mastered by the brute blood of the air,
Did she put on his knowledge with his power
Before the indifferent beak could let her drop?

I have had the confirmation that I can use Jungian archetypes alongside Freud's theories, as long as I use them constructively in an argument.  I have a long time before I have to construct one; right now, I need to get through just reading and note taking.
Tags: angela carter, grindstone files - year 3, major dissertation, the magic toyshop
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