The Odyssey Essay: The After-Effects Of War In Homer

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Throughout Homer’s The Odyssey the after-effects of war, both on veterans themselves and their loved ones are shown. The events during war and the effects of war worsen the mental health of those involved in it. The way that war changes people as depicted in The Odyssey by having detrimental effects on their mental health is similar as compared to today’s world, however veterans are more emotionally closed and more recognized to have to deal with trauma caused it than depicted in The Odyssey. War changes people in The Odyssey mainly through affecting their mental state. The grief and depression that is caused by the loss of loved ones in war greatly affects family members in Homer’s epic. Menelaos is one person who suffers loss caused by war. After fighting in the arduous Trojan war and achieving victory, the violent sea shipwrecks him and his companions on their way home. As a result of the loss of all of his friends, Menelaos feels “...nothing but grief...for…show more content…
While he did not lose his friends in actual combat, the same feelings of loss and deep sadness would be provoked. This shows the psychological weight that war and events related to it bore down on the veteran. Menelaos was no longer able to live in the mental peace he could have lived in before the war. The immense trauma and anguish caused by having his friends taken away from him as a result of war left a terrible impression on Menelaos that did not fade. Not only does war affect the companions of those lost, but it much more directly affects families. After the Trojan War, Odysseus shipwrecks on Kalypso's island, and lives far away from his family, without any contact. The loss of Odysseus bears a lot of weight on his loved ones. Telemachus “...inherit[s] trouble and pain…” (Homer, 9) from the loss of his father. Odysseus’ absence leaves Telemachus empty and without one of his parents needed to guide him through life. Additionally, Penelope claims to feel
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