The weaver at the loom: A discussion of Guy Gavriel Kay’s use of myth and legend in The Fionavar Tapestry
AbstractThis work will examine the ways in which contemporary fantasy author, Guy Gavriel Kay, uses myths and legends in the construction of his high fantasy trilogy, The Fionavar Tapestry by demonstrating the thematic and structural similarities between these genres. It will do so by analysing some of the myths and legends used in Kay’s texts. These come from a variety of sources including Celtic, Norse and Greek mythology; Judeo-Christian myths; and some of the legends associated with King Arthur. It will also show the connections between these myths and legends as they often utilise similar themes or have a shared heritage. For accounts of the Arthurian legends this study has used those given in Le Morte d’Arthur and The Mabinogion, though there are many other sources available. In order to demonstrate the structural connections, this work will apply the theories of Vladimir Propp as established in the Morphology of the Folktale. However, the complexity of the narratives in fantasy literature as compared to the simplicity of folktales and what that means for the application of the ‘Functions of Dramatis Personae’ will also be explored. The choices Kay makes concerning the names of characters and places within his trilogy will be examined alongside their legendary counterparts.
PublisherUniversity of Chester
TypeThesis or dissertation
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