Proppian analysis of the narrative of Perseus’ quest for the Gorgon’s head
Various elements of the Proppian analysis can be identified in the narrative. They happen at different sequences, yet show a clear picture of what Proppian describes. First, there is a need for love by Perseus. To get what he desired, he had to take an epic journey in serach of powers that will enable him get the love of his choice as well as authority. As he sets of, Perseus, who is the valiant realises that he needs some information that will enable him achieve his dreams. He could not get the needed information without tricking the daughters. He therefore took their most valued possessions, the eye and the tooth, which he promised to return only after being given the information. Perseus departs for his mission and discovered a lack that would make everything easier for him.
The luck was the nymphs where he obtained sandals and a hat that would make him invisible to other people. With the gadgets, he was ready to confront and attach his enemy, Gorgon and obtain his head. Gorgon’s head was believed to have some powers to turn people into stones, which he required to face opposition. Perseus is met with a challenge that will prove his power. Overcoming the challenge was also important in helping him obtain the love he had been craving. He fights the monster to rescue a girl whom ultimately became his wife. Perseus obtained victory over other opposing people through the powers he obtained from the nymph and Gorgon’s head. With the mission accomplished and having captured the throne, he returned the head, sandals and the hat.
Proppian analysis presents a clear example of how most folk tales are narrated. There usually the aspect of superiority and the efforts of an individual to prove superiority. In the effort to achieve a particular goal or target, the valiant is met with tough oppositions that require supernatural intervention. In most cases, such missions are derived from the need to avenge on pat mistakes. The fulfilment of any revenge mission usually leads to a fresh desire to avenge and hence making it a circle in the lives of the characters. Death and bloodshed, especially of a prominent person or his kin is usually considered a good harvest (Hawthorne 65). Folk tales speak of characters with strange appearances due to their relations with the supernatural. For instance, we are told of the three sisters that shared one eye and a tooth, the nymphs that had magic sandals and hats and lastly the Gorgon with their magic heads.
Folk narratives are usually aimed at proving that good things can only be obtained after a series of hard work, perseverance and overcoming a number of obstacles. The story ended after Perseus had finished all his enemies by turning them into stones using the magic head from Gorgon (Hawthorne 68). He was able to ascend into power without much opposition as well as being able to marry the girl of her choice. Such rest could only be obtained after he had fought all the battles. There is a lot of suspense on the reader especially when one desires to know how the hero lived life after. Such suspense reveals the interest of the tale in telling more about the struggles that one has to through rather than their life after victory has been attained.
Hawthorne, Nathaniel. The gorgon's head. W. & R. Chambers, 1909.