Creation Myths FOLKLORE, MYTHS, AND LEGENDS: A WORLD PERSPECTIVE MRS. KERCHER Africa: The Creation of Human Beings I. Possible Interpretations A. B. Appealing aspects 1. Thoughtfulness of how humans are created 2. The importance of music, singing, and dancing The Shilluk culture 1. The creator made people who could cultivate millet and fish 2. The color of skin varies according to the color of the earth Africa: The Creation of Human Beings II. Plot Summary A. Creator (Juok) makes people out of clay B. He prepares them to cultivate millet and to fish C. He prepares them to express joys and sorrows D. People must be able to hear music to learn E. Three races are created 1. Brown Egyptians 2. White Cushites 3. Black Shilluks 4. All races are perfect Africa: The Creation of Human Beings Comprehension Questions: 1. How does this creation myth reflect the culture to which it belongs? 2. How does the myth view human beings and their purpose? 3. When Juok’s human beings need tongues in order to dance, what does this reveal? The Middle East: Enki, Lord of the Earth and Waters of Life I. Possible Interpretations A. It serves as a “window” into its time and place B. Purpose could be religious or ritual C. It was written in a language of its people D. Complexity of the culture 1. Enki is a god and teacher 2. Summerian culture is reflects in Enki’s lessons The Middle East: Enki, Lord of the Earth and Waters of Life II. Plot Summary A. B. The Sea-House is built 1. The structure acts as both town and temple 2. Known as city of Eridu Enki creates fish, plants, orchards, clouds, and rain A. He fills the rivers, plants crops, creates vegetation, and teaches skills to the gods B. He puts a specific god in charge of each aspect of what becomes Sumerian life The Middle East: Enki, Lord of the Earth and Waters of Life Comprehension Questions: 1. Describe Enki’s nature as it is depicted in this myth. What view of the universe does this depiction of Enki reflect? 2. What does this myth about Enki reveal about Sumerian society? 3. How does the depiction of Enki as a creator-god in this myth differ from the depiction of him in the myth about Adapa? To what extent, if any, is it helpful to know both myths?