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The Hero’s Journey by Dunlavey

Joseph Campbell described the hero’s journey, originally known as the monomyth, in his book The Hero with a Thousand Faces. Thehero’s journey is supposed to be a sort of representation of the stages that a majority of the world’s myths or stories follow. This is what Campbell argued for but that doesn’t necessarily mean it is true nor does it mean it is a great structure to follow. In fact, I believe that the hero’s journey doesn’t allow for a wide variety of interpretation of any myth or story that seemingly follows its structure.

I think that the hero’s journey simplifies storytelling to the point where there’s no creativity behind it anymore. Any cultural significance in a story is lost because the monomyth doesn’t take into account the differences in cultures. Not only that, but the hero’s journey has a male bias where women rarely are portrayed in the myths or are only a part of the story to further the male hero. There are better structures to be used that actually allow for variations, imagination, interpretations, and don’t exclude things just for the sake of simplification. If you stick too much to the rigid structure of the monomyth then you won’t be able to provide an insightful look into the story. It will just be the same thing over and over again with any lessons or meanings lost to the audience. The hero’s journey could theoretically still be used but it is very flawed and should be improved.

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