45 min

Marina Warner on Eve, Lilith, Athena, Medusa The Great Women Artists

    • Arts

I am so excited to say that my guest on the GWA Podcast – for the second time! – is Dame Professor Marina Warner, one of the leading historians on this planet!

A writer, lecturer, author of almost 40 books, and former president of the Royal Society of Literature, Marina Warner, according to the New Yorker, is an authority on things that don’t actually exist – from magic spells, monstrous beasts, to pregnant virgins.

A world specialist on myths, fairy tales and stories from ancient times, Warner has written indefatigably for the last five decades on how these tales – some thousands of years old – still speak to our culture today and allow us to appreciate how they are shaped by the societies that tell them.

I have poured over her books, from Alone of All Her Sex, her study of the cult of the Virgin Mary, to my favourite, Monuments and Maidens: The Allegory of the Female Form, that so pertinently looks at how women are represented as allegories, bringing about ideas of actual power vs perceived power – for example, while Lady Liberty might be ubiquitous, how much power does she, a woman, actually have?

Warner’s list of accolades is extensive: a distinguished fellow at All Souls College, Oxford; an honorary fellow at many more; the giver of the BBC’s Reith Lectures in 1994; and awarded doctorates of eleven universities in Britain, such as King's, the Royal College of Art, Oxford University, and more.

But it’s stories and the power of imagination that fascinate her, and has what led me to be so captivated by her work. She has written – inside stories was the place I wanted to be, especially stories that went beyond any experience I could live myself at first hand. The very first stories I heard were saints’ lives: the joyful, sorrowful, and glorious mysteries of the Virgin Mary, the terrible gory violence of the martyrs’ ends … When I first encountered myths and fairy tales, the wonder I felt was pure wonder. But as I have grown older, wonder has taken on its double aspect, and become questioning too.

And that is why I couldn’t be more excited to be, instead of looking at a woman artist, investigate the representation of female figures that we so often see across history and art history – Eve and Lilith from the Bible, and Medusa and Athena from mythology.

MARINA'S BOOKS:
https://www.marinawarner.com/
https://www.ucpress.edu/book/9780520227330/monuments-and-maidens
https://www.waterstones.com/book/forms-of-enchantment/marina-warner/9780500021460
https://www.waterstones.com/book/joan-of-arc/marina-warner/9780198718796
https://www.waterstones.com/book/alone-of-all-her-sex/marina-warner/9780198718789

THIS EPISODE IS GENEROUSLY SUPPORTED BY THE LEVETT COLLECTION:

https://www.instagram.com/famm.mougins // https://www.merrellpublishers.com/9781858947037

ENJOY!!!

Follow us:
Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel
Sound editing by Nada Smiljanic
Music by Ben Wetherfield

https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/

I am so excited to say that my guest on the GWA Podcast – for the second time! – is Dame Professor Marina Warner, one of the leading historians on this planet!

A writer, lecturer, author of almost 40 books, and former president of the Royal Society of Literature, Marina Warner, according to the New Yorker, is an authority on things that don’t actually exist – from magic spells, monstrous beasts, to pregnant virgins.

A world specialist on myths, fairy tales and stories from ancient times, Warner has written indefatigably for the last five decades on how these tales – some thousands of years old – still speak to our culture today and allow us to appreciate how they are shaped by the societies that tell them.

I have poured over her books, from Alone of All Her Sex, her study of the cult of the Virgin Mary, to my favourite, Monuments and Maidens: The Allegory of the Female Form, that so pertinently looks at how women are represented as allegories, bringing about ideas of actual power vs perceived power – for example, while Lady Liberty might be ubiquitous, how much power does she, a woman, actually have?

Warner’s list of accolades is extensive: a distinguished fellow at All Souls College, Oxford; an honorary fellow at many more; the giver of the BBC’s Reith Lectures in 1994; and awarded doctorates of eleven universities in Britain, such as King's, the Royal College of Art, Oxford University, and more.

But it’s stories and the power of imagination that fascinate her, and has what led me to be so captivated by her work. She has written – inside stories was the place I wanted to be, especially stories that went beyond any experience I could live myself at first hand. The very first stories I heard were saints’ lives: the joyful, sorrowful, and glorious mysteries of the Virgin Mary, the terrible gory violence of the martyrs’ ends … When I first encountered myths and fairy tales, the wonder I felt was pure wonder. But as I have grown older, wonder has taken on its double aspect, and become questioning too.

And that is why I couldn’t be more excited to be, instead of looking at a woman artist, investigate the representation of female figures that we so often see across history and art history – Eve and Lilith from the Bible, and Medusa and Athena from mythology.

MARINA'S BOOKS:
https://www.marinawarner.com/
https://www.ucpress.edu/book/9780520227330/monuments-and-maidens
https://www.waterstones.com/book/forms-of-enchantment/marina-warner/9780500021460
https://www.waterstones.com/book/joan-of-arc/marina-warner/9780198718796
https://www.waterstones.com/book/alone-of-all-her-sex/marina-warner/9780198718789

THIS EPISODE IS GENEROUSLY SUPPORTED BY THE LEVETT COLLECTION:

https://www.instagram.com/famm.mougins // https://www.merrellpublishers.com/9781858947037

ENJOY!!!

Follow us:
Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel
Sound editing by Nada Smiljanic
Music by Ben Wetherfield

https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/

45 min

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