At the same time, the organizing story - teller, who is, it should be emphasized, a woman, enacts through her narrative the everlasting human desire for earthly life, which suggests that literature storytelling preserves life.
Even the frame story itself is revealing. The king, the oppressor, can destroy cities and kill their inhabitants, but he cannot guess the outcome of imaginary tales or compete with the common sense of an inexperienced young woman, to whom he, the omnipotent, ultimately surrenders. Regardless of his stature, he has to wait in order to satisfy his curiosity. Never in any European literary setting has such a glorious tribute been paid to the powerful influence of literature. It is interesting that Arabic society under - valued the tales because they were of popular origin and denigrated them as unsophisticated, unpolished folklore. Consequently, the tales probably have had less influence on Islamic than on European literatures, which have been indebted to A Thousand and One Nights for almost a thousand years, even though the tales were not translated into a European language until Antoine Galland produced a French version in the early eighteenth - century. Medieval writers, who generally did not invent their own tales but reworked existing ones, tailoring and transforming them to suit their own purposes and design, made free use of narrative resources passed on orally without the mediation of writing.
Instances of shared sources