Gilgamesh Odysseus Oedipus Rex Plato Ovid's Metamorphoses Term Paper

Pages: 2 (654 words)  ·  Style: MLA  ·  Bibliography Sources: 0  ·  File: .docx  ·  Topic: Literature


The search for immortality and the desire to escape the reality of death has always been a perennial theme in literature and in all human endeavors. This ancient text is an epic poem or work of literature that explores this essential question and confronts the human and existential inevitability of death.

What the Sumerian text shows and what this paper will discuss through an analysis of the character of Gilgamesh, is firstly that the quest for immortality is related to the search for meaning of life and existence and that this meaning is found in the acceptance of the human condition.

There is a certain irony in the contradictions in the character of Gilgamesh. He is described as almost godlike and the most powerful man on earth. At the same time he has many human faults and the epic poem leads to a conclusion where the powerful king has to accept the fate that is common to all human beings - namely death.

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Gilgamesh, king of Uruk, is described as remarkable figure that created amazing ziggurats and temples and is both physically strong and attractive. Yet he also has flaws. His rule is despotic and he shows little respect for others - especially women, whom he abuses at will. His subjects are in fact oppressed by this king. In order to remedy this abuse the gods send a wild man, Enkidu, who is as powerful as Gilgamesh to challenge him. After fighting they become friends and embark on a number of adventures. But when Enkidu is killed for transgression against the gods, Gilgamesh is devastated and his quest for immortality begins.

TOPIC: Term Paper on Gilgamesh Odysseus Oedipus Rex Plato Ovid's Metamorphoses Assignment

It is the death of his close friend that makes Gilgamesh aware of his own mortality and the realization that he too must face death even though he is a powerful king. He rebels against this destiny and seeks a solution to this primary human predicament. This quest for immortality leads Gilgamesh to seek Utnapishtim,… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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APA Style

Gilgamesh Odysseus Oedipus Rex Plato Ovid's Metamorphoses.  (2007, February 3).  Retrieved September 25, 2021, from

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"Gilgamesh Odysseus Oedipus Rex Plato Ovid's Metamorphoses."  3 February 2007.  Web.  25 September 2021. <>.

Chicago Style

"Gilgamesh Odysseus Oedipus Rex Plato Ovid's Metamorphoses."  February 3, 2007.  Accessed September 25, 2021.