Odyssey Absent Character

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Even though Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close may seem very distant from The Odyssey, both writings have a similarity: the effects of absent secondary characters on the main characters. The plots of The Odyssey and Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close are greatly influenced by the idea of absence. Much of the action in both The Odyssey and Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close are prompted by absent characters. The secondary characters can be regarded absent because some are literally deceased. To Oskar, in Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, Thomas Schell Jr. is absent because he died in 9/11 terror. His absence drives Oskar to the edge, causing developments of phobias. For instance, Oskar fears to be in tall buildings, and it can be assumed…show more content…
Anna, who is the first true love of Thomas Schell, becomes the main link between Oskar’s grandparents. As Anna is important as a former lover of Grandpa, she is significant as sister of Grandma. Believed to be a replacement of Anna for Thomas Schell, Grandma grows her son without the help of Thomas Schell, her husband, who left after the fallout of their relationships. Throughout Thomas Schell Jr.’s life and Grandma’s life, Thomas Schell is very much absent; there are no memories of the family to be held. Thomas Schell is absent for Grandma in a literal sense because he leaves his family behind, but he is emotionally absent as well. The relationship between Grandpa and Grandma was purely a form of symbiosis: Thomas Schell needed a replacement for Anna, and Grandma needed Thomas Schell. Even though Grandma mentioned how she was ‘okay’ without Thomas Schell’s love, her letters to Oskar imply her whole life is empty without the love she deserves. In Oskar’s case, there is one more person in absence: his mother. Mom is constantly portrayed as an antagonist for the most part of the novel because Oskar feels betrayed by how Mom can laugh with Ron. At the point of the grief steps he is in when his hatred towards Mom reaches pinnacle, Oskar is deeply consumed with guilt because he hid the voicemails from Dad. After lying about the messages from Dad right
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