Mythological "Trickster"

Topics: Trickster, Difference, Creation myth Pages: 2 (706 words) Published: November 28, 2006
Mythology is perhaps one of the oldest customs of the human race. Myths are stories. They are stories that, through oral presentation and written documentation, have been passed down through centuries and are even still being created today. These stories carry themes and characters that are used to relate those themes. One prominent type of character in most myths is that of the "trickster". Two of the perhaps more well known tricksters throughout mythology are the Snake in the Garden of Eden and the lizard Agadzagadza in the African story of death. Despite the differences between them, both characters act as the antagonist in their respective story and their roles are in fact quite similar, if not the same.

As antagonists, the Snake and Agadzagadza play similar roles, but there are marked differences between them. The origination of each story and character creates clear-cut distinctions. The Snake and the Garden of Eden come from the creation story in the book of Genesis in the Bible, while Agadzagadza comes from a far less popular story in Africa, "The Origin of Death". Within the stories an early difference that becomes evident is the fact the Snake is actually the devil, Satan himself, while Agadzagadza seems to be a character that simply plays his role. A clear difference is that the Snake is the sole cause and reason for how Eve is tricked, while in "The Origin of Death", it is a combination of the slow worm as well as the deception of Agadzagadza. Similarly, Agadzagadza serves as a relay between the gods and man, and though the Snake works against God, he acts completely independent from Him. This difference accounts for the fact that Agadzagadza's character changes in variations of the African myth, while the Snake is very consistent throughout Christian creation stories. A final difference arrives at the end of each myth. The Snake receives punishment from God -- "The LORD God said to the serpent,

Because you have done this
cursed...
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