Critical Thinking and Analysis

The purpose of the Essay Responses is to demonstrate critical thinking and analysis while examining a specific course topic. There will be two during the course of this semester; this assignment concerns topics covered in Unit Two.

For Essay Response #1, you are asked to read a selection of the Epic of Gilgamesh (posted in full on Blackboard) and summarize it using the “Monomyth/Hero’s Journey” theory created by Joseph Campbell.

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This assignment includes three steps:

Step one: Read over your notes, the Myth and Mythology PowerPoint, and pages 262-264 in the textbook, which focuses on Joseph Campbell’s monomyth/Hero’s Journey theory.

Step two: Read the selected sections of the Epic of Gilgamesh, keeping in mind Campbell’s theory (it may be helpful to print out the text if you can and take notes as you go to map out the various stages throughout the story).

Step three: Write your essay; your essay should consist of a summary of this story in your own words and explicit application of Campbell’s theory. Use Campbell’s theory to structure your paper. In your essay, you should demonstrate that you have read the Epic of Gilgamesh, have the skill of summarization, and fully comprehend Campbell’s work on mythology that we covered in class.

General Requirements & Deadlines

Length: 400-600 words (You will not be penalized for going over 600 words as long as you stay on topic.)

Proper grammar, spelling, punctuation, syntax, etc. (i.e., well-written)

Your essay should have a proper structural organization (introduction, body, and conclusion).

As you are not required, nor expected, to consult any outside sources there is no need to include a Work’s Cited page.

Grade Rubric:

Summary: 30 pts

Theory: 40 pts

Writing: 30 pts

Two Pitfalls to Avoid

DO NOT PLAGIARIZE. Plagiarism will NOT be accepted and WILL be reported to the school. The consequences are not worth it; use your own writing abilities to complete this assignment. If you need any help, contact me to set up a meeting and we will discuss your paper.

Do NOT consult any sources beyond the textbook, class notes & PowerPoints, and the text posted on Blackboard! Students who have done this frequently end up doing poorly on the assignment because they include information not relevant. In addition, consulting outside sources often leads to plagiarism – don’t risk it!

Use this link to access the text for Essay Response #1. Though this link is to the whole text (and I encourage you to read the entire story, as it is interesting), you are only required to read pages 3-6, 12-19, & 22-24 for this assignment (11 total required pages). There is also an index at the end if you have any questions about character names, references, or terms.

To remind you, the information for Joseph Campbell’s “Hero’s Journey” can be found in the Myth and Mythology PowerPoint as well as pages 262-264 in your textbook. The main highlights of the hero’s life in this theory; they are:

1) Separation/Departure

2) Initiation

3) Return

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