Sophocles once stated, “Success is sweet, even if it comes from deception.” This truth is portrayed through three different short stories known as “How Stories Came to Earth”, “Coyote Steals Fire”, and “Master Cat: Puss in Boots”. In each of these three tales the main character spins webs of deceit by tricking people or, in some cases, animals into doing what they want them to. This includes Anansi’s act of tricking a snake into stretching himself out so Anansi could tie the snake to the stick in “How Stories Came to Earth.” Another form of deceit used, this time, in “Coyote Steals Fire” is when Coyote pretends to be dead in order to steal the fire from Thunder. In the story “Master Cat: Puss in Boots” Puss creates many empty threats to tell people so that they will lie for him. Each character obtains what he/she wishes to through a form of deception. While “How Stories Came to Earth”, “Coyote Steals Fire”, and “Master Cat: Puss in Boots” share similar tricksters who ultimately achieve their goals, they differ on the subject matters of their strategies, the benefits their tricks play on society, and the justification of their actions.
Each protagonist’s form of strategy shares likenesses as well as differences. In “How Stories Came to Earth” and “Coyote Steals Fire” the strategies used are beneficial to society. The stories that Anansi acquires from the gods are then, in turn, able to be spread throughout the world. This gives everyone a chance to hear and learn tales for generations to come. In order to do all of this, Anansi cheated each animal that the gods wanted into helping him. Anansi would trick the animals into trusting him and then, right when Anansi had them in his grasp, he would trap them and take them back to the gods. When Coyote steals the fire from Thunder he creates an opportunity for a new life for everyone on earth. Before fire, people were forced to eat raw meat and to freeze during the winter, but because Coyote stole the fire, people...
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