How to read literature like a professor Identify an archrtypal story and apply it to a literary work with which you are famliar.

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

Foster suggests multiple situational archetypes in his book How to Read Literature like a Professor, including 'The Journey.'  'The Journey', as a situational archetype usually involves a hero adventuring out into the kingdom and beyond, facing terrible peril.  Foster suggests that in 'the journey' archetype the hero  "descends into a real or psychological hell and is forced to discover the blackest truths, quite often concerning his faults."  The Lord of the Rings is a solid example of 'the journey' archetype.  Frodo has to go on a quest to destroy a particularly evil piece of jewelry to restore goodness to Middle Earth again, but along the way, he is seduced by the power of the ring.  His journey into Mordor is definitely like descending into hell, as he struggles to separate himself from the power of the ring.

See eNotes Ad-Free

Start your 48-hour free trial to get access to more than 30,000 additional guides and more than 350,000 Homework Help questions answered by our experts.

Get 48 Hours Free Access
Approved by eNotes Editorial Team