Classical Mythology In The Odyssey: The Odyssey

834 Words4 Pages
Destany Tange
HRS 119 Classical Mythology

The Odyssey

The Odyssey is Homer 's epic of Odysseus ' decade long struggle to return home after the Trojan War. While this epic is full of magic, dread goddess, gods and mystical creatures it is also a story of the human condition. A story of “Homecoming”, an allegory of the hardships that a warrior faces when coming home after years of war. Through this epic Odysseus must shed his warrior mentality and re-establish his domestic mindset. It is only through his figurative death, gestation, and rebirth is he able successfully return home. While the epic begins twenty years after the war, we are given a witness to Odysseus journey during his reaccount to King Alcinous and Queen Arete. Odysseus
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Odysseus and his men arrive upon the Cyclops Island. It is here where Odysseus warrior mindset blinds him with the desire for wealth and honor. This desire leads to the death of many of his men by the hands of the Cyclopes and indirectly by Odysseus arrogant need for honor. His trip to Hades is a symbol of Odysseus’ internal fight between his domestic and warrior self. By visiting the many individuals in Hades and allowing them to communicate their views on what is important in life. Odysseus hears from the mouths of his comrades, enemies, and family the significance of family over honor and wealth in battle. It is by his journey to Hades that Odysseus’ warrior mentality begins to “die” and his domestic mindset begins to take root once again . The further along in their adventures they go the more Odysseus’ men lose their trust towards their leader. Challenging his words and directly going against his warnings as seen in the cases when his men open the bag of winds gifted by Aeolus, master of the winds, and later when they eat the sacred cows of Helios. It is by Odysseus’ and his men’s arrogance and warrior drive that Odysseus loses more and more men till it is just him left. This is the final representation of Odysseus warrior identity physically being stripped away till the ties of his former warrior self are all
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