NARCISSUS & HIS REFLECTION
Narcissus was born in Thespiae in Boeotia, the son of Cephissus (the personification of the Boeotian river of the same name) and the nymph Liriope. His mother was warned one day by the seer Teiresias that her son would live a long life as long as ‘he never knows himself.’ As he reached his teenage years, the handsome youth never found anyone that could pull his heartstrings, indeed, he left in his wake a long trail of distressed and broken-hearted maidens, and one or two young men fell by the wayside too. Then, one day, he chanced to see his own reflection in a pool of water and, thus, discovered the ultimate in unrequited love and fell in love with himself. Naturally, this one-way relationship went nowhere, and Narcissus, unable to draw himself away from the pool, pined away in despair until he finally died of thirst and starvation. Immortality, at least of a kind, was assured, though, when his corpse (or in some versions the blood from his self-inflicted stab wound) turned into the flowers which, thereafter, bore his name.
Mythologies involve stories about old religions and old gods. In this mythology, the man Narcissus, becomes immortalized by his obsession with his own looks.
For this analysis:
1- Do a little research and learn more about Narcissus
2- Explain the literal story
3- Explain the figurative story- that is: what is the lesson of the story?
4- Explain why you think the story of Narcissus is important in today’s global culture.
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