Dear Friends: It is my pleasure to be a guest on Silvio Canto’s wonderful Blogtalkradio.com program, Canto Talk, this Valentine’s Day. I will be joined by military history expert Barry Jacobsen to review romance-based myths. So, Click HERE on Tuesday, Feb. 14th at 11 am Pacific Time/ 1 pm Central/ 2 pm Eastern or after for the archived show.
Barry will start the program by reviewing some traditional myths surrounding romance. Then, we will review how they have evolved to take darker characters and transform them into romantic heroes, in a trend I will call “twilighting”.
For example, the vampire began its history in literature as a character more suited for Halloween than Valentine’s Day.
But, in the new Millennium, vampires have been transformed into diamond-skin, chivalrous, heart-throbs.
But that isn’t the only transformation that has been occurring either. For example, the myth of Hades and Persephone has been a staple in literature and history courses.
One day Hades, God of the Underworld, saw Persephone (Goddess of Spring) and instantly fell in love with her.
Ades (Hades) confided his secret in his brother Zeus, asking for help, so the two of them concocted a plan to trap her. As the girl (Persephone) played with her companions, they caused the ground to split underneath her.
Persephone slipped beneath the Earth and Hades stole her to the Underworld where he made her his wife.
The myth says that Persephone was very unhappy, but after much time, she came to love the cold-blooded Hades and lived happily with him.
However, in the world of fan-fiction, the relationship between Hades and Persephone has been rewritten to be a veritable love-match. Forbidden Fruit: Persephone’s Story by Lady Fael is a good example.
Then, there are the books that follow in the footsteps of these fan-based works:
Olympian Confessions: Hades and Persephone by Erin Kinsella depicts Hades as the only Greek God who cares about humanity (despite the lack of worship). Persephone falls in love with the dark hero, because he is the only one who allows her to have the freedom she craves and the trust she needs. This version of the myth turns Demeter into a real mommie-dearest figure.
In For the Love of Hades by Sasha Sommers, Hades has to do battle in order to save Persephone (who falls in love with him immediately). After breaking off an engagement with a king and negotiating with the Fates, she is allowed to join Hades for 6 months each year.
To go with these books, there is also a wealth of fan-art.
At a time when “50 Shades Darker” is the Valentine’s movie offered by Hollywood, taking a look at the “Twilighting” of myths seems like a fun choice for this year’s show.