Document Type



Renaissance and ‘magic realism’ literature share many characteristics; among these are the prevalence of mythology and religion. It is no new observation to say that contemporary literature has strong and discernible connections to the earlier literature of the Renaissance; scholarship has long seen the parallels between eras that share the collapse of established values and beliefs. The use and treatment of mythology and religion in these respective categories of literature, however, invites a discussion yet to be made in scholarship. An examination of the form and function of mythology and religion in authors of both Renaissance and ‘magic realism’ literature shows how these shared conventions similarly address and respond to relevant social, political, and cultural tensions. While the comparison is not a one to one throughout, analysis will reveal how Renaissance authors of drama and authors of ‘magic realism’ in the late 20th and 21st-century evoke the same spirit in the use of these conventions. Both use these belief systems to explain relevant aspects of humanity, as was the intention of these systems in their original design.



Thesis Comittee

Dr. James Crowley, Thesis Advisor

Dr. Michael McClintock, Committee Member

Prof. Evan Dardano, Committee Member

Copyright and Permissions

Original document was submitted as an Honors Program requirement. Copyright is held by the author.