December 13th, 2008
In modern society, heroes are frequently defined as people who are willing to sacrifice themselves to help others and do the right thing. Some common examples in daily lives are firefighters, soldiers who served to protect their country, etc. There are also fictional heroes who are powerful and flawless in everyway like Superman. Odysseus in the other hand is a Greek’s mythical hero who is not perfect, but he possesses god-like (Greek’s god) traits. Homer’s Odysseus is categorized as epic story; thus, scholars call Odysseus epic hero. An epic hero is basically “the main character or protagonist in an epic that is heroically larger than life, often the source and subject of legend or a national hero” (Literary). Some attributes of epic hero are: “hero faces trials and enemy while struggling on an epic journey, the hero encounters “women as temptresses” who threaten his completion of the journey, at the end of the journey, the hero must complete a final task alone, after the final task is successfully accomplished, the hero returns home, a leader of his people” (Kimberly).
Homer’s The Odyssey took place about 750 to 700 B.C (Homer 117), in Mediterranean (Troy), near Greece. This epic story was about a man who left his homeland twenty years earlier to fight in Trojan War. Odysseus’ goal now is to make his way home to Ithaca, his hometown. It took him ten years to conquer the great city of Troy and it was going to take him another ten years to reach Ithaca. Odysseus showed good and bad traits throughout the poem that influenced his journey home.
Odysseus’ most prominent trait was his intelligence. His quick thinking helped him out during tough situations, as when Odysseus and his man were trapped in Polyphemus’ cave. Odysseus realized that the only way to beat this giant was to make him drunk. He said:
‘Kyklops, try some wine....