The Magic Weapon Archetype
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Fictional Text: The Sword in the Stone

Fictional Text: The Sword in the Stone | The Magic Weapon Archetype | Scoop.it
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T.H. White's "The Sword in the Stone" is a novel that focuses on the life of a young King Arthur. Arthur is tutored by a wizard named Merlyn, who is there to help Arthur mature and learn all of the necessary skills in order to one day become king. He turns him into various animals, and by becoming different animals Arthur is forced to think in a different way and become wise. This novel makes use of perhaps the most famous example of the "magic weapon" archetype: a sword stuck in a stone. When Arthur has fully matured and is ready to become king, he stumbles across a stone that has a sword stuck in it. The legend says that whoever pulls the sword out of the stone is rightful king. Arthur then proceeds to effortlessly pull the sword out of the rock, thus giving him the power to become king. There are other examples of swords set into stone throughout literature, and there are slight variations as well. The most common variation of the magic sword archetype is a sword that has been broken, and in order to regain its magical powers it must be fixed again. This example of Arthur pulling a magic sword out of a stone in order to be granted power is what comes to most people's mind when they think of the "magic weapon" archetype. The sword, although it does not possess magical powers itself, gives Arthur the power necessary to become a king, thus allowing him to accomplish a lofty goal of his. It is the classic example of the "magic weapon" archetype in literature.  

 

White, T. H. The Sword in the Stone. New York: G.P. Putnam's Sons, 1939. Print.

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Literary Criticism: Infobase Learning - Login

Literary Criticism: Infobase Learning - Login | The Magic Weapon Archetype | Scoop.it
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This literary criticism focuses entirely on the Harry Potter series, written by J.K. Rowling. You all know the story of Harry Potter and his magic friends. They grow up together at the wizard school of Hogwarts, and throughout the series they grow both physically and mentally, becoming the adults that they were destined to be. In the end, the forces of good and evil face off, and the inevitable battle between Harry and Lord Voldemort ensues. This series makes use of almost every archetype out there, from "good vs. evil" to "life vs. death". However, one of the most obvious archetypes that it presents is the magical weapon archetype. Clearly, in this series, the magicians wand is absolutely essential to every wizard, and without these magic weapons, a wizard is without his power. This is one of the more physically clear examples of the magic weapon archetype throughout literature, because the magic wand is literally a weapon that has truly magical powers. It is also interesting that each magic wand throughout the series almost has a special bond with its owner, and they each represent their owner's traits. For example, Ron's wand is usually messed up and loopy, thus representing his sometimes unconfident self. Overall, the use of the magic weapon archetype in the Harry Potter series is clear.     

 

Adney, Karly, and Holly Hassel. "Scholarship on the Harry Potter Series." Bloom's Literary Reference Online. Facts On File News Services, n.d. Web. 16 Mar. 2014.

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Children's Book: Where the Wild Things Are

Children's Book: Where the Wild Things Are | The Magic Weapon Archetype | Scoop.it
One night Max puts on his wolf suit and makes mischief of one kind and another, so his mother calls him 'Wild Thing' and sends him to bed...
Alex Pena's insight:

In Maurice Sendak's 1963 children's classic "Where the Wild Things Are", a little boy named Max is sent to bed by his mother as a punishment. As any little boy would do, he sulks in his room for a while. However, he begins to imagine being in another world, a world where the wild things are, and he finds himself on an interesting adventure in a far-off land. In this tale, Max is using his imagination and his creative mind as his own sort of magic weapon. He is unsatisfied with the situation in his home, so he uses his imagination to take him somewhere else where he can have fun.  This use of the imagination as a magic weapon could shape a child's understanding of society because it could teach him to use his imagination more often. After reading this book, a child would want to do the same thing as Max and transport himself into far off lands using his imagination. This use of imagination as a child would help him to develop his creative mind, thus allowing him to become a better writer and thinker.  

 

Sendak, Maurice. Where the Wild Things Are. New York: Harper & Row, 1963. Print.

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Danny, Dillon, Greg's comment, March 20, 2014 8:20 PM
So a magic weapon does not necessarily have to help the hero defeat an enemy as long as it helps them accomplish their goal? ~Greg
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Song: Juicy J Ft. Lil Wayne & 2 Chainz - Bands A Make Her Dance (REMIX) (Clean) (Radio Version) - YouTube

Download- http://www.sendspace.com/file/62cekg Juicy J Ft. Lil Wayne & 2 Chainz -- Bands A Make Her Dance Clean Juicy J Ft. Lil Wayne & 2 Chainz -- Bands A M...
Alex Pena's insight:

In Juicy J's song "Bandz A Make Her Dance" , he raps the line "bands a make her dance" about 40 separate times. He raps it both in the chorus of the song and in the actual verses of the song. When he raps this line, he is actually saying that his money (which is wrapped with rubber bands), makes any girl dance. This utilizes the stereotype in the rap world that guys can control women with money, and make them do whatever they want. It also utilizes the "magic weapon" archetype by clearly representing the bands of money as a magic weapon that can help him make any girl do whatever he wants. Although this magic weapon may not help him to accomplish a useful goal, it helps him to accomplish a goal that he has set.

 

Wayne, Lil, and 2Chainz. Bandz a Make Her Dance. Juicy J. Mike WiLL Made It, 2012. MP3.

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Commercial: Classic AXE Commercial - The AXE Effect Bar Dance - YouTube

We can help you with the girls. But the dancing? That's up to you.
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This "Axe Effect" TV commercial portrays a young man who used Axe spray, and consequently attracts two young, attractive women to himself. In today's society, this situation would be almost any guy's dream. Consequently, Axe portrays this product as being a "magic weapon" for guys. They can spray it on themselves, and within minutes they will be surrounded by hundreds of young, attractive women. Axe knows that scantily clad, attractive women are huge reoccurrences in TV commercials for the very reason that they help to sell the product to the male audience. This helps to advertise their product because it plants the idea in the male viewer that, if they buy axe (magic weapon) and use it as a cologne, they will be able to get any girl they want. 

 

"Classic AXE Commercial - The AXE Effect Bar Dance." YouTube. YouTube, 21 June 2012. Web. 17 Mar. 2014.

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Image: Gillette Ad

Image: Gillette Ad | The Magic Weapon Archetype | Scoop.it
Alex Pena's insight:

This image is of a Gillette razor ad, one that promotes its latest shaving products. The picture is pretty self-explanatory , as it shows a young man who has used Gillette's shaving products, thus attracting an attractive women. This ad is much like the Axe commercial that is also in our scoop-it because, like the Axe commercial, it makes use of the "magic weapon" archetype. It advertises the Gillette shaving cream product as every man's magic weapon; this weapon will help them to achieve their goal of attracting a young, beautiful woman. Again, just as Axe did with their commercial, Gillette has used the "attractive woman" selling technique to shape the meaning of the image. By showing a man this ad, there is a chance he will think that if he uses the Gillette product (magic weapon), he will be able to get any woman he wants.

 

Gillette. Gillette Australia. N.p., n.d. Web. 12 Mar. 2014.

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