Study Questions Essay

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Possible topics for the midterm essay. The Epic of Gilgamesh 1. Compare and contrast the role and symbolism of the snake in The Epic of Gilgamesh and in Genesis (-4). Identify the symbol and what it stands for. Then answer questions such as these: Is the symbol cultural or contextual? How do you decide? How do you derive your interpretation of the symbolic meaning? Does the symbol undergo modification or new applications if it reappears? 2. How would you define the relationship between Gilgamesh and Enkidu? How the depiction of their friendship contributes to the development of the story. 3. Gilgamesh is a demigod. Discuss the ways in which his semi-divine nature influences his adventures, his relationship with women, and his political affairs, as well as his status after death. Genesis (1-9) 1. Compare and contrast the role of women in the Epic of Gilgamesh with women in Genesis (1-4). (i.e. Eve and Shamhat) 2. What elements of Genesis (1-9) may be compared with The Epic of Gilgamesh? To What extent are the people, objects, and events in both stories be part of an allegory. What moral lessons are stated or implicit? Oedipus the King 1. Belief in the gods. Examine the people’s attitudes toward the gods as expressed in the Choral Odes. Compare and contrast their views with those of the royal family (i.e. Oedipus and Jocasta). What does Sophocles show about the citizens and how they evolve through the story? 2. Then and now-Why is the play popular? Think about why Sophocles presented this story to the people of ancient Greece. What questions might it have raised with the ancient Greece audience? (Consider their belief system, along with plot structure and lessons from the story of the protagonist.) 3. Author’s craft- Find examples of the following elements of author’s craft, and explain how they contribute to a theme (identify which

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