I perceive Beowulf as a hero and the person who sets goals for all heroes today. Other people distinguish him as the substandard guy; they believe he is not courageous nor loyal. He is reflected as a rather arrogant person especially when he states he will fight Grendel. Beowulf says “I do not consider myself a lesser fighter than Grendel does himself; therefore I will not kill him with a sword, and deprive him of life in that way- though I surely could.” (page 20) Once he states that, he shows that he is extremely conceited. Beowulf not only says he is stronger than everyone else but that he can kill Grendel with or without a sword.
The demonstration of courage begins with the slaying of Grendel without the use armor. Beowulf shows his skills and courage, which is what is thought to be found in a hero. The decision behind the use of no armor is because Beowulf felt that there should be no advantage over Grendel. After the slaying of Grendel, Beowulf reassures the people that he really is courageous and skillful. Beowulf depicts his courageousness by stating; "I count myself weaker in war or grapple of battle than Grendel himself.
But Beowulf is selfless and fights only for his people, and not himself. Gilgamesh on the other hand is selfish and takes advantage of his people. Gilgamesh just wanted to be a hero and be immortalized, that is the reason behind him fighting the monster Humbaba, not to protect his people. Beowulf loves his people and
Winston Smith is a hero without heroic qualities. He does not possess what Orwell once offered as the definition of heroism: ordinary people doing whatever they can to change social systems that do not respect human decency, even with the knowledge that they can't possibly succeed. Winston was a valiant man who revolted against the
He was devastated, but even more angry, so he sought to avenge his friend and honor his name. On the other hand, Beowulf, has little emotion in his decisions to fight. He looks at the greater need of his people, not what he wants or what might happen to him. He shows this when he volunteers to battle Grendel. Grendel had not done anything to Beowulf personally, but to his people.
In the novel, Grant’s selflessness reveals itself unconditionally. He puts all his desires aside to help Jefferson become a man. His goal requires him to set aside his plans and other goals to benefit someone else. Grant does not believe that he is heroic or selfless, which can be seen when he tells Jefferson “A hero is someone who does something for other people.” (191), nevertheless, he contradicts himself by alleviating Jefferson’s bleak future, doing this requires him to abstain from being inconsiderate. Without being as magnanimous as he is, Grant could not have helped Jefferson as he
Odysseus is also acutely aware of his surroundings especially for an illusion, for example, the island with the sirens singing. Even if these were warnings from the gods and goddesses themselves, he would still learn and remember what to do the next time he encounters these problems in his life. Lastly as I mentioned before, a hero must always show mercy to their foe no matter how bad they are. But Odysseus doesn’t show any mercy to his enemies, not even his own when they disrespect his honor and pride. A real hero doesn’t kill even if their honor and pride has been torn to shreds, yet Odysseus killed all those suitors because they were ransacking his house and eating his goods.
In literature, a foil is a character who either contrasts with or is the complete opposite of another character, usually the main character, or protagonist. The purpose of a foil is to accentuate the positive characteristics of the protagonist to make them appear as a generally better individual. Unlike Beowulf, Unferth is overall selfish, cowardly, and dishonorable. He puts others down when he contributed nothing to the defeat of Grendel. Also, Beowulf would never bring harm to his own kin or even his fellow thanes.
These flaws include him losing his men and the fact that he gloats and commits blasphemy toward Poseidon by saying, "I am sure that even great Poseidon will never give you back the eye you lost" (Odyssey, Book IX, page 185). Nevertheless, this does nothing but add to the idea of Odysseus being the quintessential hero of the ancient Greek society. Despite the fact that his men were killed, Odysseus was resilient and escaped the Cyclops, therefore, proving his heroism once again. One example of a modern day hero would be bill gates. The huffington post describes a hero as, “someone who “we” determine to have demonstrated behaviors and decisions that are ethically and emotionally worthy of our awe.” And this is exactly what bill gates and Odysseus have done.
But at that moment he felt willing to change, because he lived a sinful life, and ask God to save him, a dramatic moment where he felt lost and asked for mercy. Everyman realized that his fortune material had no value and that it was more important the fortune of God. Everyman acts representing humanity, fighting for morality inside, although he thinks that death is evil because it comes from hell. Death is ironically a messenger of God. Everyman had discovered that while he was successful in life, the afterlife was a different story because his wealth could not go with him or count in the Book of life.