Consider this

The oldest surviving piece of literature in existence; The Epic of Gilgamesh

is SUPER gay

please share this with as many Gamers™ as you can before they talk about gay being forced into media

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@mal I have to admit I've only read *about* it, never actually read it - but from what I understand, I don't think it's gay at all! Rather, Platonic male relationships were just experienced and talked about very differently back then.

And the Babylonians/Akkadians didn't have all the subsequent Abrahamic religions' Weird Sex Rules™, so they wouldn't have skirted around G and E's sexuality if they'd wanted to make them gay.

Happy to be corrected, if wrong!

@ej

before gil meets enkidu there's a metaphor gil has that is meant to foreshadow his meeting and befriending enkidu, in which he finds an axe which he picks up and would keep by his side and would "love it as he did a woman"

plus in general there wasn't really language that existed to describe being gay at the time

@mal I'm really not a scholar or anything - just a bloke who spends too much time in the British Museum - but I've read that the "love E as he would a woman" bit is kinda famous for being an example of how Fertile Crescent folk used to talk about Platonic male relationships, and how male bonding worked back then?

And there was lots of awesome explicit pre-Christian (and *definitely* pre-gamer!) gay literature, so I'm pretty confident they did have ways to talk about it..

@ej

yeah I mean it's not "wow 100% confirmed gay" but it's something serious scholars say is probable was the intended meaning which is more than enough for masto

@ej

Also when I say they didn't have the language what I mean is that if two men were in love that would just be what is portrayed, they wouldn't describe it as "gay" or "homosexual" or etc

@ej

Not to mention the hundreds of years of scholarship in which they desperately avoided interpreting anything as gay which could be avoided

@mal Ah, like, so they had ways to talk about gay sex - but not non-sexual gay love? That's really interesting - and quite plausible, I think, given some of the content! If so, I wonder if it's equally so for straight or envy relationships?

@mal Yeah, true, it does seem a bit unreasonable to just say "they probably just interpreted things differently" - when centuries of Abrahamic scholars have been wilfully misinterpreting ancient gay literature!

@mal (By the way I'd normally be really keen to research my references, but I'm afraid I'm mega-busy this morning and don't really have time to look stuff up. Again, if I'm wrong or I'm missing something I'd love to be corrected!)

@ej @mal Historical translators notoriously compress things they aren't sure about into what they are sure about. So very obvious queer relationships become "strong platonic friendships" because that's what the translators assume when trying to interpret it from a very western, Christian worldview.

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