Epics of Ancient and Modern Society

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In cogitating on the “Epic of Gilgamesh”, Gilgamesh, the Sumerian king, is a famous and heroic legend. In his pursuit for eternal life, Gilgamesh takes a journey to the very edge of the earth fearlessly showing bravery, boldness, and courage while facing great dangers. Throughout the entire epic Gilgamesh exhibits notorious skills as a leader. An epic consists of a long narrative or poem surrounded around a heroic leader or warrior. The central figure is a legendary or historical figure of heroic proportions, in this case the Sumerian king Gilgamesh (Sayre 14). I am inspired by Gilgamesh’s ethics. These ethics can be seen in a collection of examples in society today providing no significant outcome for citizens. To begin, much of the “Epic of Gilgamesh” reflects the “inevitability of death” theme. For example, at the snort of the Bull of Heaven a huge pit opened up and three hundred victims fell into hell. Gilgamesh could have conveniently run away to escape and saved his own life. Alternatively, he stayed and protected the citizens while risking his own life. Thus no more of the righteous citizens were killed. The Epic of Gilgamesh acknowledges what many Mesopotamian kings were unwilling to admit at least publicly: their own, very human, limitations, their own powerlessness in the face of the ultimate unknown death (Sayre16). Similarly The Hunger Games is another epic tale that reflects the “inevitability of death” theme. In this tale two tributes are invoked in each of the twelve districts and those tributes are rushed off to a gridiron where they battle until one and only one tribute survives. Against all odds, Prim’s name is chosen at the reaping which is Katniss’ little sister; however, Katniss volunteers taking the place of her younger sister. Katniss becomes the district’s tribute for the hunger games risking her own life to sacrifice her sister’s life. The Hunger Games seizes the principal of “reality television” and by pleasurably amplifying it in the...
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