Gilgamesh Vs Hammurabi Essay

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To say that a finite list of attributes and services make up a good society is similar to saying that it is possible to find a piece of clothing that flatters every person on the planet. Each of the readings covered in the first two weeks of class held conflicting views of what different leaders throughout history considered a good society to be because of this exact truth: every single person has a different opinion of what a good society is because there is no one shared and commonly accepted definition of a good society, with the most interesting differences occurring in the comparison of The Epic of Gilgamesh and Hammurabi’s Code. However, there are common themes that reoccur in each reading, including the need for a strong leader that…show more content…
In Hammurabi’s Code, Hammurabi declares that his code is law has ‘established law and justice in the language of the land and promoted the welfare of the people,’ thus implying that every decision he makes, however unpopular or harsh it may be, is for the good of the people and therefore he can never be at fault. By drawing legitimacy from the support of the gods, Hammurabi places himself in a more powerful position but also gives himself the right to mold his society in whichever way he chooses. In contrast, Gilgamesh, who also derives legitimacy from the gods, has neither the support of the people or the desire to create a strict legal code and thus his unpopularity becomes a rallying point for his people as ‘The men rejoiced: ‘Now Gilgamesh has met his match.’’ However, the world Gilgamesh lives in is exactly as he wants it, meaning that in his eyes, society is good. Although governed very differently and holding different values, both leaders created strongholds in the Mesopotamian world that remain relevant today, which may be seen as successfully creating a good

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