In the Prologue of The Thousand and One Nights, the vizier tries to persuade his daughter to not marry King Shahriyar by telling her “The Tale of the Ox and the Donkey.” The story is meant to teach her a lesson, and the Donkey in the story represents Shahrazad. In this essay, explore the lessons in Shahrazad’s story “The Merchant and the Demon,” including the three old men’s tales. Are there any aspects of her story that reflect the prologue, or the situation of King Shahriyar? What is the message or lesson of each old man’s tale? What is the overall lesson of Shahrazad’s story “The Merchant and the Demon”? What might she be trying to teach King Shahriyar through her storytelling?
This essay is worth 50 points and will be graded according to the rubric for short analyses. All essays should use an introduction, several body paragraphs, and a conclusion paragraph. All essays must be from 500-750 words.
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