Of The Archetypes Of A Phallus By Sophie Pollard

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“Myths are the expression of the primordial images in the collective unconscious of man. In the beginning man had certain experiences and received them in their psyche in the form of images. Since they are the first images they are called archetypes of the collective unconscious.” The above cited paragraph is the opinion of Carl Gustav Jung (qtd. in Trivedi). According to Jung the unconscious patterns of age old impressions play a prominent part in the production of literature. They serve to gauge the present in the terms of the past and vice versa. They are the means to distort, recreate and reform the reality as a master code is placed in front of the issue the writer deals with. The use of mythological figures and stories in literature is…show more content…
Pollard takes some Crow poems such as ‘Song for a Phallus’, ‘Crow and Mama’, ‘Oedipus Crow’, ‘Crow Sickened’ etc and points out the similarity between the state of Oedipus in Seneca and the anxiety of the Crow in Hughes. Pollard also sees the poems as a development of the poetic study of the ‘Oedipus complex’.In ‘Song for a Phallus’ the very title hints at the phallic song and bears sexual connotations. In this poem the story of Oedipus turns upside down as Laius and Jocasta respectively turns into Daddy and Mammy. In this version the father seals the womb up as the message has arrived that the son would treat the father after the birth as a turd. When the baby comes out Daddy is about to castrate it. This fear of castration is the universal fear of the first stage of psychosexual development. At this juncture the mother comes to the rescue of the Oedipus with an overt sexual…show more content…
The crow, who is the bearer of the black flag (‘Crow blacker than Ever’) is also the unmistakable symbol of death. The primitive men were at a loss to understand death as it refused to be defined and hence in was to them the greatest mystery. In the myth created in the Crow poems the protagonist introduces the death and rebirth motif. The poem ‘Examination at the Womb Door’ gives a brief description of death through an interview before entering the world where death holds the sway. The poem commences- “who owns these scrawny little feet?” The answer immediately follows- Death. The rest of the poem then questions regarding the ownership of ‘bristly scorched looking face’, ‘still-working lungs’, ‘utility coat of muscles’, ‘unspeakable guts’, ‘minimum efficiency eyes’, ‘wicked little tongue’, ‘the whole rainy, stony earth’ and ‘all of space’ the only answer that comes repeatedly is – Death. At last the climax comes

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