LGBT themes in mythology - Wikipedia
It is not really implied in this poem that Gilgamesh and Enkidu are a gay couple. However, to suggest that they have some kind of homosexual relationship is. Toward the end of the Mesopotamian Epic of Gilgamesh King Gilgamesh laments the applying modern conceptions of homosexuality to these relationships. The epic describes the relationship between Gilgamesh, the great powerful ruler of Uruk, and Enkidu, a male created by the gods to divert.
It is dedicated to two male officials, named Hor and Suty, and is carved with their names, titles and hymns to the sun god. It has been suggested that they might have been a male couple, whose images were later erased by their wives and children.
Bryn Mawr Classical Review
While this interpretation is possible, it is very unlikely, as on another stela of the two men the erasures include these same family members. Here, the men refer to each other as: They both worked as architects on the great temple of Amun at Luxor in around BC.
This bronze figure shows an ancient Egyptian god with a large erection. To modern eyes, it may appear to be pornographic. The presence of an erection symbolizes strength, virility and the ability to stay alive. It is hard to assess what is erotic in another culture, and easy to project our ideas onto such images. Sex and gender seem like universals, but even with such direct visual images, everything is culturally shaped.
LGBT History Project: The World’s First Gay Love Story?
The ancient Egyptians recognised the existence of same-sex desire, but the handful of references that survive all refer to men, and are all slightly negative. This is perhaps the earliest recorded chat-up line in human history. Of liminal ambiguity then there can be no question, because homosexuality served as a tool in the Davidic royal propaganda.
There is much to admire between these covers, as well as a good deal of matter not obviously to the point. The sections on homosexuality and liminality are lengthy and indulge in excessive detail; the introductory chapter on Samuel takes the form of a vindication of the historicity of King David, a vindication which looks out of place in a work that claims to decode the literary artifacts that are the David, Jonathan, Saul, Michal, etc In addition, the reader lacks a conclusion summarizing A.
Instead, he is furnished with an Epilogue on David and some of his wives. As I have shown elsewhere at length 1 the book suffers from being wholly hypothetical in some of its most basic contentions and from circular arguments.
If you do not consider that Gilgamesh and Enkidu or David and Jonathan are liminal, which is different from considering them borderline characters, 2 then all too often all the tenets of liminality A. If you do not find yourself convinced by A.
If you know what is truly at stake in the condemnation of homosexual intercourse in Leviticus, that is, which of the two partners, the active or the passive male, assumes a role which is ungodly according to the Holy Code and what was previously the case, you will be less than certain that A. By circular arguments I designate the cases where A. For example, liminality, therefore ambiguity of expression and in conception, is declared to inform many of the dealings of David and Jonathan; but it turns out that, for the apologetic to operate, their homosexuality must be fairly obvious, with Jonathan readily assuming the passive stance and inferior status out of his 'love' for David.
It hardly supersedes the sophisticated analysis by Walls of the ways in which the Gilgamesh constructs same-sex desire; 4 and it misses the confirmation, by an expert Assyriologist, that the imagery and metaphors to which Gilgamesh and Enkidu are assigned strongly suggest same-sex love and lust, 5 thus ruling out any ambiguity.
Finally, it ignores the new evidence, from sources as early as some of the Sumerian Gilgamesh tales, for a homosexual affair between the two heroes, because A. The same cannot be said of her exegesis of the Hebrew twosome.
For one thing, while the passages where David and Jonathan interact are notoriously elusive and cry for detailed scrutiny, this part of the book is a good deal shorter than the Gilgamesh section: David and Jonathan as liminal beings fill a mere 28 pages , against 51 for Gilgamesh and Enkidu as such .
No wonder if the reasoning seems rushed.