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Who was the world's first author? - Soraya Field Fiorio

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4,300 years ago in ancient Sumer, the most powerful person in the city of Ur was banished to wander the vast desert. Her name was Enheduanna, and by the time of her exile, she had written forty-two hymns and three epic poems— and Sumer hadn’t heard the last of her. Who was this woman, and why was she exiled? Soraya Field Fiorio details the life of history’s first author.

Writing existed before Enheduanna in the form of religious hymns and stories. However, Enheduanna was the first person to sign her name to a work and to write using the word “I.” She was the first to use writing to explore deep, private feelings like sadness, confusion, and abandonment. How did this development change the course of literature?

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TED-Ed Animations feature the words and ideas of educators brought to life by professional animators. Are you an educator or animator interested in creating a TED-Ed Animation? Nominate yourself here »

Meet The Creators

  • Educator Soraya Field Fiorio
  • Director Laura White
  • Narrator Christina Greer
  • Sound Designer Phil Brookes
  • Music Phil Brookes
  • Director of Production Gerta Xhelo
  • Editorial Producer Alex Rosenthal
  • Producer Bethany Cutmore-Scott
  • Associate Editorial Producer Elizabeth Cox
  • Fact-Checker Eden Girma

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