Religious Conflicts and Their Impact on King Arthur’s Reign in Marion Zimmer Bradley’s The Mists of Avalon
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The aim of the following paper is to examine the conflict between the cult of the Mother Goddess and Christianity, which affects King Arthur’s reign in Marion Zimmer Bradley’s original retelling of Arthurian legends – The Mists of Avalon (1983). The religious conflict presented in the novel is inextricably linked with representations of femininity and the figures of Morgaine (Morgan le Fay) and Queen Gwenhwyfar, who are dedicated, respectively, to Avalon and the Church. By investigating both women’s beliefs, actions, and relationship with Arthur, this paper will demonstrate how in Bradley’s retelling the transition from the worship of the Goddess to Christianity conditions King Arthur’s reign and ultimately contributes to his downfall.
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