When Heroes Love
The Ambiguity of Eros in the Stories of Gilgamesh and David
By (author) Susan Ackerman
Normal Price: $118.00
Your Price: $106.20 AUD, inc. GST
Shipping: $7.95 per order
You Save: $11.80! (10% off normal price)
Plus...earn $5.31 in Boomerang Bucks
Availability: Available to Backorder, No Due Date for Supply
When Heroes Love by Susan Ackerman
Book DescriptionToward the end of the Mesopotamian Epic of Gilgamesh King Gilgamesh laments the untimely death of his comrade Enkidu, "my friend whom I loved dearly." Similarly in the Bible, David mourns his companion, Jonathan, whose "love to me was wonderful, greater than the love of women." These passages, along with other ambiguous erotic and sexual language found in the Gilgamesh epic and the biblical David story, have become the object of numerous and competing scholarly inquiries into the sexual nature of the heroes' relationships. Susan Ackerman's innovative work carefully examines the stories' sexual and homoerotic language and suggests that its ambiguity provides new ways of understanding ideas of gender and sexuality in the ancient Near East and its literature. In exploring the stories of Gilgamesh and Enkidu and David and Jonathan, Ackerman cautions against applying modern conceptions of homosexuality to these relationships. Drawing on historical and literary criticism, Ackerman's close readings analyze the stories of David and Gilgamesh in light of contemporary definitions of sexual relationships and gender roles. She argues that these male relationships cannot be taken as same-sex partnerships in the modern sense, but reflect the ancient understanding of gender roles, whether in same- or opposite-sex relationships, as defined as either active (male) or passive (female). Her interpretation also considers the heroes' erotic and sexual interactions with members of the opposite sex. Ackerman shows that the texts' language and erotic imagery suggest more than just an intense male bonding. She argues that, though ambiguous, the erotic imagery and language have a critical function in the texts and serve the political, religious, and aesthetic aims of the narrators. More precisely, the erotic language in the story of David seeks to feminize Jonathan and thus invalidate his claim to Israel's throne in favor of David. In the case of Gilgamesh and Enkidu, whose egalitarian relationship is paradoxically described using the hierarchically dependent language of sexual relationships, the ambiguous erotic language reinforces their status as liminal figures and heroes in the epic tradition.
Buy When Heroes Love book by Susan Ackerman from Australia's Online Bookstore, Boomerang Books.
Book DetailsISBN: 9780231132602
(229mm x 152mm x 25mm)
Imprint: Columbia University Press
Publisher: Columbia University Press
Publish Date: 22-Apr-2005
Country of Publication: United States
» Have you read this book? We'd like to know what you think about it - write a review about When Heroes Love book by Susan Ackerman and you'll earn 50c in Boomerang Bucks loyalty dollars (you must be a member - it's free to sign up!)
Author Biography - Susan Ackerman
Susan Ackerman is professor of religion and women's and gender studies at Dartmouth College and chair of the Department of Religion. She is the author of Warrior, Dancer, Seductress, Queen: Women in Judges and Biblical Israel and Under Every Green Tree: Popular Religion in Sixth-Century Judah.
Phone: 1300 36 33 32 (9am-2pm Mon-Fri AEST) - International: +61 2 9960 7998 - Online Form
Address: Boomerang Books, 878 Military Road, Mosman Junction, NSW, 2088
© 2003-2016. All Rights Reserved. Eclipse Commerce Pty Ltd - ACN: 122 110 687 - ABN: 49 122 110 687