Saphira, the snake priestess : a novel, and; Minoan is not Greek : an essay.

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Writing)


School of Communication and Arts


Education and Arts

First Advisor

Associate Professor Dr Jill Durey.


The creative project of the novel, Saphira, the Snake Priestess, embodied two goals. The first was to write a novel to appeal to what I have termed the sub Young Adult reader, the reader of around fourteen years of age. The second was to introduce this age group to the remarkable Minoan civilisation of around 1600BC. The novel aims to stimulate interest in the subjects of Ancient History and Mythology that inform studies in English and Literature in the later years of secondary school. The essay, Minoan is not Greek, explains some of the reasons for the distinction between the Minoan and the later Mycenaean and Greek civilisations. As explained in the essay, the creative project is an historical novel, not a work of history. The first section of the essay discusses some of the novels that have appeal for the student of around fourteen years of age. The second section of the essay explores the way in which a novel may be written about a civilisation, from which there is no deciphered writing, based on archaeology, artefacts and mythology. In the last section of the essay on the relevant mythology, there is a brief indication of the psychological basis for the archetypal motifs that have persisted in the western tradition. Both novel and essay show the reader that Minoan achievements were distinct from later developments on the Greek mainland and represent the first efflorescence of western civilisation.

Access Note

Access to this thesis - the full text is restricted to current ECU staff and students only. Email request to library@ecu.edu.au

Access to this thesis is restricted. Please see the Access Note below for access details.