A mythic symbol that speaks volumes for all

Introducing people of all ages to mythology... in pre-college educational curricula, youth orgs, the media, etc. Share your knowledge, stories, unit and lesson plans, techniques, and more.

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A mythic symbol that speaks volumes for all

Post by JamesN. » Fri Nov 20, 2015 1:45 am

I've been thinking a great deal about the "Statue of Liberty" and "Ellis Island" lately and the present situation of fear-mongering that is gripping the world community since the Paris bombing. And it strikes me as ironic what the story of the US and French connection to this iconic symbol has come to represent for generations and it's penetrating relevance to the consideration of the growing refugee and immigrant crisis taking place across the planet.

Joseph Campbell said on more that one occasion that any idea of a new myth would have to include "all people"; and indeed I think here is a particularly poignant reminder of what at least some of that idea that might encompass.

Emma Lazarus’ Famous Poem

A poem by Emma Lazarus is graven on a tablet

within the pedestal on which the statue stands.
The New Colossus

Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,

With conquering limbs astride from land to land;

Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand

A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame

Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name

Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand

Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command

The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.

"Keep ancient lands, your storied pomp!" cries she

With silent lips. "Give me your tired, your poor,

Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,

The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.

Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,

I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"
What do I know? - Michael de Montaigne