The Epic of Gilgamesh

The Epic of Gilgamesh

A tragic hero is a character endowed with greatness whom fate or the gods condemn to death. Although he/she will be defeated, the tragic hero fights valiantly and wins our admiration by his or her virtue in the face of adversity.

Consider Karna or Enkidu as the tragic hero of their respective epics. How do Karna and Enkidu handle the awareness that they will die? Compare their heroic qualities to those of the traditional heroes (Gilgamesh, the Pandavas) who emerge victorious at the end of the story.

What new meaning do we find in the epic if we take the tragic hero as greater than the traditional hero?