The Epic of Gilgamesh is often hailed as the earliest masterpiece of world literature. More to the point, it is often seen as one of the finest myths of the ancient world. Yet the title that is typically used for this (historically un-named) legend specifically suggests that this story is an EPIC, and not a myth per se. With this in mind, your first possibility for this Blog post is to view and frame the story of Gilgamesh as an epic. Just what IS an epic, exactly, and why does this text qualify? How does it compare to other epics you know about, and what important things do we learn about the tale when viewing it through an epic lens? For your second and third options, you might hearken back to our work from last class, when we discussed the all-important theories of Aristotle (on tragedy) and Joseph Campbell (on the “monomyth” of the hero). More to the point, I would like to see you carefully and critically apply the ideas of these thinkers to The Epic of Gilgamesh. If you are interested in the key notions of Aristotle, you might show how the plot of this Mesopotamian masterpiece fits certain “tragic” modes (such as leading toward a kind of “catharsis”), or work to view Gilgamesh (or perhaps Enkidu) as a kind of “tragic hero” according to the terms laid out by Aristotle. Finally, you might tell us about how Campbell’s theories regarding the hero’s quest help us to understand the journey undertaken by Gilgamesh. What key ideas or issues get raised via a careful application of Campbell’s ideas about the stages of a hero (i.e. separation – initiation – return) to this ancient myth/epic?