Respond to each question in 2-5 sentences. Integrate source material from course readings into your responses and cite these. Please number each response so that I know to which question you are responding.
What does it reveal about Egyptian society and culture for its architects to design pyramids of such enormity and precision?
What is the role of religion in ancient Egyptian culture? How did you come to this conclusion?
Choose two pieces of Egyptian art from this time period and embed or attach images. Discuss the significance(s) of these images to the culture.
Choose one or two artifacts from this module and discuss the role of women in the cultures/cultural artifacts.
In Gilgamesh, what does the story of Enkidu’s education by the priestess (called a prostitute by some translators) tell us about Mesopotamian views of culture and civilization?
Why is Gilgamesh an important text? What is its historical significance? How is it relevant today? What lessons does it teach? Discuss specific details from the story. How is the text very culturally divergent?
Cast Gilgamesh with Hollywood actors as though you were producing a film about the story. Who would cast as which character and why?
Pretend that the Persians had enjoyed consistent success in their conflicts with the Greeks. How would Western Civilization be different today?
Read a piece of history by Herodotus. Discuss two points you wish to analyze and/or evaluate in this history. Why are Herodotus’s contributions significant?
Name and discuss the two major themes (two specific themes for each of these two works for a total of four themes) of Homer’s Iliad and Odyssey. Refer to specific episodes from both epics. This will require a reading of the texts or summaries or overviews of these two epics.
Describe the role of the gods of Olympus in ancient Greek culture. What does this view of deities reflect about the Greek cultures of this time period?
Which Greek god or goddess would you choose to be and why?
What poem of Sappho do you find most interesting? Why? Refer to specific lines from the poem. Analyze specific language in the poem.
Dante Alighieri played a critical role in the literature world through his poem Divine Comedy that was written in the 14th century. The poem contains Inferno, Purgatorio, and Paradiso. The Inferno is a description of the nine circles of torment that are found on the earth. It depicts the realms of the people that have gone against the spiritual values and who, instead, have chosen bestial appetite, violence, or fraud and malice. The nine circles of hell are limbo, lust, gluttony, greed and wrath. Others are heresy, violence, fraud, and treachery. The purpose of this paper is to examine the Dante’s Inferno in the perspective of its portrayal of God’s image and the justification of hell.
In this epic poem, God is portrayed as a super being guilty of multiple weaknesses including being egotistic, unjust, and hypocritical. Dante, in this poem, depicts God as being more human than divine by challenging God’s omnipotence. Additionally, the manner in which Dante describes Hell is in full contradiction to the morals of God as written in the Bible. When god arranges Hell to flatter Himself, He commits egotism, a sin that is common among human beings (Cheney, 2016). The weakness is depicted in Limbo and on the Gate of Hell where, for instance, God sends those who do not worship Him to Hell. This implies that failure to worship Him is a sin.
God is also depicted as lacking justice in His actions thus removing the godly image. The injustice is portrayed by the manner in which the sodomites and opportunists are treated. The opportunists are subjected to banner chasing in their lives after death followed by being stung by insects and maggots. They are known to having done neither good nor bad during their lifetimes and, therefore, justice could have demanded that they be granted a neutral punishment having lived a neutral life. The sodomites are also punished unfairly by God when Brunetto Lattini is condemned to hell despite being a good leader (Babor, T. F., McGovern, T., & Robaina, K. (2017). While he commited sodomy, God chooses to ignore all the other good deeds that Brunetto did.
Finally, God is also portrayed as being hypocritical in His actions, a sin that further diminishes His godliness and makes Him more human. A case in point is when God condemns the sin of egotism and goes ahead to commit it repeatedly. Proverbs 29:23 states that “arrogance will bring your downfall, but if you are humble, you will be respected.” When Slattery condemns Dante’s human state as being weak, doubtful, and limited, he is proving God’s hypocrisy because He is also human (Verdicchio, 2015). The actions of God in Hell as portrayed by Dante are inconsistent with the Biblical literature. Both Dante and God are prone to making mistakes, something common among human beings thus making God more human.
To wrap it up, Dante portrays God is more human since He commits the same sins that humans commit: egotism, hypocrisy, and injustice. Hell is justified as being a destination for victims of the mistakes committed by God. The Hell is presented as being a totally different place as compared to what is written about it in the Bible. As a result, reading through the text gives an image of God who is prone to the very mistakes common to humans thus ripping Him off His lofty status of divine and, instead, making Him a mere human. Whether or not Dante did it intentionally is subject to debate but one thing is clear in the poem: the misconstrued notion of God is revealed to future generations.
Babor, T. F., McGovern, T., & Robaina, K. (2017). Dante’s inferno: Seven deadly sins in scientific publishing and how to avoid them. Addiction Science: A Guide for the Perplexed, 267.
Cheney, L. D. G. (2016). Illustrations for Dante’s Inferno: A Comparative Study of Sandro Botticelli, Giovanni Stradano, and Federico Zuccaro. Cultural and Religious Studies, 4(8), 487.
Verdicchio, M. (2015). Irony and Desire in Dante’s” Inferno” 27. Italica, 285-297.