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The Role Of Leadership In The Epic Of Gilgamesh

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Leadership is something that has been around since civilization. You would think that an idea so old would be straight forward but, we can see completely different ideas of what a leader, good or bad, should look like. While some of these stories may be fictional, they line up with a historical timeline of expectations. We can also see how the role of a king and how their duties have evolved in real life. The Epic of Gilgamesh shows us how to control your power. In 1 & 2 Samuel, we see what makes a ruler great and obstacles they have to over come. When we read The Theban Plays we saw how smart a ruler had to be to please his people. While all of these leaders may seem great there are plenty of reason that makes them not great. They…show more content…
We see him change from a tyrannical leader to someone who has immortality on his mind. Does that sound like a good leader? The poem opens up with how Gilgamesh treats the people in his city. More importantly the women. While society back then was mostly male dominant, this was still something that was against most moral codes. The way this is translated you can tell Gilgamesh is not a popular king. “Gilgamesh sounds the tocsins for his amusement, his arrogance has no bounds by day or night.” (George, Page 839 Kindle Edition). The book even talks about how he is supposed to “shepherd” over his people but they think he is more like a “savage bull”. The journey Gilgamesh and Enkidu went on was not so heroic. This journey is to make an even bigger name for himself. I find it interesting that Gilgamesh doesn 't understand he could have more fame than ever by pleasing his people instead of pleasing himself. When Enkidu is on his death bed I don 't think the actual death of Enkidu affects him. Gilgamesh realizes his impending death and searches for immortality to obtain more fame and recognition. A very important part of the story is how the gods react to the way he has handled himself. Utnapishtim talks about the meritless journeys he went on instead of helping Uruk. This goes to show that even back in 2000 BC, they still knew how important it was to be a selfless leader. The story ends by…show more content…
Oedipus is a very smart man who some how sees what his people need before they need it. In fact that is a main reason he became king, because of his intuition. He also rescues his people by solving the riddle of the sphinx. But while he is a very smart man he comes across as careless in some situations. Anticipation may be a good thing but, there are always risks or consequences to acting reckless. With this combination it is hard to tell if Oedipus is a good leader or if he is a tyrant. Another reason why Oedipus would be considered a tyrant is because he is very unstable. “For he removed from her garment the golden brooches which she was wearing; he lifted them and struck the sockets of his own eyes, shouting that they would not see either the evils he had suffered or the evils he had done, now only in darkness could they see those whom they must not see, in darkness could they mistake those whom they wanted to recognize.” His reaction to finding out the truth about marrying his mother was rather odd. He stabs out his own eyes! That seems rather rash and very insane. This shows that Oedipus lets his emotions get the best of him. While Oedipus is a very smart ruler, he does seem to not be in the right mental
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