This year’s story takes us deep into the fundament of western mythology: The Odyssey itself. A questing epic that is less to do with treasure and far horizons and much more to do with simply getting home, this tale is in fact a story of Nostos: Homecoming.
What are the stories we are being told about home in the times we are living in? When mythic culture appears to be often lying in ruins around our feet, is it possible that we are being sold a mimic? How does the promise of erecting of a great wall or the leaving of a union of countries tantalize the fiction of a glorified past that may not ever have been? Are we so starved of story we will take even a lie with a tiny shard of true longing within it? How did our imagination get so colonized?
Throughout this tale we encounter what the Greeks call Metis: a kind of shrewdness, almost cunning. From the weaving of Penelope’s shawl, to the layers of Ulysses’s rhetoric, we encounter a multifarious and dangerous world. In this most archaic of tales we will encounter many complexities, and many clues towards becoming what we could call a true human being.
At the same time this is a story from a clearly patriarchal society, strictly hierarchical, and with devastating consequences for disobedience. So the telling is not a celebration but an exploration of those values, their magics and complexities.
What are they saying to us today?