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Written By:Eleanor Glaze - 1988

  • Jaiyavara - Eleanor Glaze cover


In this, her third novel, Eleanor Glaze weaves with contemporary tools the ancient truths of Everywoman. In an interview after the manuscript for JAIYAVARA had been completed, Glaze described the work as "A futuristic myth...a futuristic Gothic horror story in which the horror is transcended...It was my own private obsession. But later, near the end of the writing, I began to think of it as perhaps in a new and different interpretation of ANTIGONE...a feminine vision of the future.

Jaiyavara, a dancer taken from her dancing by a tragic accident, turns to painting as a medium. The world lies gasping around her, languishing in the throes of a great and devastating plague. One man, Giroux, the self-proclaimed abbot of an ecumenical group of refugee recluses, dreams of a new world.

It is Giroux' singularly masculine wisdom which leads him to seek" symbols, new myths. The old male-dominated myths and archetypes have lost their luminosity" for his new world' and it is to Jaiyavara that he turns for a symbol and a generative base. Ironically, the same male wisdom which showed Giroux what was needed also blocks him from perceiving how to win it, and he destroys Jaiyavara in his attempts to use her for the cause.

Yet, as has always been the nature of the feminine in human history, Jaiyavara's is the ultimate triumph. If it is not she who stands victor in the emerging new world, it is certainly her creativity, intuition and art—the very things which Giroux needed but could not command—which do.