Singing of Atalanta, Daphnis, and Orpheus
This book examines popular erotic myths with regard to their origins and literary treatment throughout antiquity. The relation of ritual to certain mythic patterns that reflect initiation rites is also considered. These myths reinforce the association between cult and mythology in literature. Initiation patterns were employed as literary metaphors for falling in love or even for holding a philosophical argument on human progress. The myths are chosen in order to form a narrative sequence, but also as an example of how mythic patterns can be variously manipulated in literature.