Monique Wittig Mary Beth Pringle Spraggins - Essay

Mary Beth Pringle Spraggins

(Contemporary Literary Criticism)

[By using myth in Les Guérillères Monique Wittig] transcends the twentieth century and envisions a utopia in which old myths have been adapted to achieve new ends. By this use of myth Wittig makes two important points about women in the twentieth century: they are trapped by myth, yet they can find a mythic means of escape from entrapment.

Two principal types of myth—classical and contemporary—are used by Wittig. By "classical" myths I mean legends from Greek and Roman antiquity, folktales, and Bible stories. By "contemporary" I refer to the kinds of myths described by Roland Barthes in Mythologies, those cultural—sometimes class-associated—myths by which humans define...

(The entire section is 878 words.)