Comparing The Epic Of Gilgamesh And The Thousand And One Nights

944 Words Nov 12th, 2015 4 Pages
The roles of women vary in different ways. The role of women can also be shown in literatures. The Epic of Gilgamesh and The Thousand and One Nights are two examples of literatures that explain the role of women. There are various ways to describe the roles. For example, women in these two literatures were described as vindictive, guiding, strong, and also be described as sex symbols. In The Epic of Gilgamesh there were three women characters that are important. Their names are Shahmat, Ishtar, and Ninsun. These three women characters play a big part in the epic and show different examples of women’s roles. Shahmat is the temple harlot (prostitute) that offers herself to Enkidu. She portrays roles such as: vindictive and guiding. By Enkidu submitting to Shahmat he gains knowledge and understanding. He becomes human and is betrayed by the animals. Shahmat then becomes something like a guide to Enkidu. “Enkidu, this is the food and drink men eat and drink. Eat and drink your fill”. Ishtar is the goddess of love and war. She is an example of how malicious women can be. She appears in the epic after Gilgamesh and Enkidu defeats Humbaba. Ishtar asks Gilgamesh to marry her but he denies her request. Ishtar then becomes furious and askes her father, Anu, God of Heaven to release the bull of Heaven to kill Gilgamesh. Ishtar’s plan did not work out quite in her favor. The bull was slayed by Gilgamesh and Enkidu. The outcome of all this is that the Gods decided that Enkidu should…

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