Toni Morrison's "Beloved" and "The Epic of Gilgamesh" Comparison Essay by write123

Toni Morrison's "Beloved" and "The Epic of Gilgamesh"
Compares Toni Morrison's "Beloved" and "The Epic of Gilgamesh", translated by N. K. Sandars, as heroic literature.
# 106415 | 1,450 words | 4 sources | MLA | 2008 | US

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This paper introduces the heroic elements of the plots of Toni Morrison's "Beloved" and "The Epic of Gilgamesh", translated by N. K. Sandars. The writer explains that "The Epic of Gilgamesh", considered to be the first tale of a mortal hero, contains themes similar to biblical stories just as Morrison uses similarities of the biblical Cain to shape her main protagonist Sethe. The writer also explains that Morrison tries to break stereotypes through Sethe; while, Sanders in the "Epic" attempts to shatter the image of the vulnerability of male heroes. Both stories can be treated as literary landmarks because these characters defy the convention of a typical hero.

Table of Contents:
The Gilgamesh Epic
The Tale of Beloved
The Ideas of a Hero/Heroine

From the Paper:

"Morrison also shows indebtedness to African American and African traditions and mythologies. Toni Morrison in her book has given a new style to fiction and the whole work is very imaginative and thought provoking. The typical master slave image of a strong man or a woman with a strong and healthy body but with a very servile attitude was prevalent but came the decade of 1910s that the African Americans started rebelling against the stereotypes and typical gender and racial roles associated with them. Toni used flight of the imagination and mythic elements along with realistic portrayal of racial, gender and class conflict."

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Morrison, Toni. Beloved.New York: Penguin, 1987.
  • Sandars, N. K., trans. The Epic of Gilgamesh. London: Penguin, 1972.
  • Jones, Carolyn. 'Sula' and 'Beloved': Images of Cain in the Novels of Toni Morrison. African American Review. 27(4): 615+, 1993.
  • Weathers, Glenda. Biblical Trees, Biblical Deliverance: Literary Landscapes of Zora Neale Hurston and Toni Morrison. African American Review. 39(1-2):201+, 2005.

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Toni Morrison's "Beloved" and "The Epic of Gilgamesh" (2008, August 04) Retrieved January 20, 2021, from

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"Toni Morrison's "Beloved" and "The Epic of Gilgamesh"" 04 August 2008. Web. 20 January. 2021. <>