Unveiling Aphrodite began as The Soul Mate Project, a blog and survey designed to understand my concept of “soul mates” after the person I had once designated as my soul mate died suddenly in a car accident. After polling my friend group for their definitions of “soul mate” and their ideas on what books, films, and music resonated with their idea of the term, my research led me into the myths of souls being split apart and searching for each other, a story as ancient as Plato.
Recognizing that this project extended beyond the scope of a single essay, I sought a graduate program that would allow me to bring focus to and contain my questions in the philosophical, psychological, anthropological, and mythological disciplines. Goddard College’s Individualized Master of Arts program proved to be the ideal home for this project, allowing me to understand my question of “how does the culture and individual define the term ‘soul mate’?” in the grander scheme of “how does the mythology of romantic love impact an individual’s experience of romantic relationships?”
The posts in this blog will take on different aspects of my big question, from examining how ancient myth and fairy tale are implicated in contemporary love stories; to discussing themes that create new myths of romantic love in popular culture; to investigating psychological, philosophical, and sociological theories that take on an even bigger question, “how do we love?” In this blog I hope to unveil the space between the myths and the experience; the often-divergent paths between romantic and intimate loving; and how we might give value stories and experience that may not fit into the traditional, mythical model of romantic love.
Note: This blog project is intertwined with my workshop, Unveiling Aphrodite: Examining the Mythology of Romantic Love, a writing workshop designed for participants to explore the myths that have been implicated in their own romantic love experience.