Gilgamesh: Man's First Story Literary Qualities

Bernarda Bryson Shahn
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While much of the appeal of the story derives from the essential qualities of the original narrative, Bryson's skillful use of language and the coherence of her characters adds considerably to the reader's enjoyment. Because of the episodic structure of the narrative, Bryson must quickly and concisely reveal the nature of her characters. She accomplishes this primarily through believable dialogue. For example, when Enkidu laments his loss of natural purity after the wild animals turn away from him, the reader is sympathetic with the pain he expresses. Both Enkidu and Gilgamesh are unquestionably brave.

Yet both have moments of fear and selfdoubt, making them seem well-rounded and human.

Through focused description, Bryson provides added touches of realism to the people and events. When Ninsun prays to Shamash for help, she first ascends to the roof so that her words can more easily reach the heavens. After her opening...

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This section contains 381 words
(approx. 1 page at 400 words per page)
Buy the Gilgamesh: Man's First Story Study Guide
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