Intro to Odyssey

Intro to Odyssey - Character of Odysseus • “cunning...

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The Odyssey Homer Introduction Ancient Greek epic poem attributed to Homer Composed circa 800 BC Original poem was an oral composition to be delivered by a trained bard Plot Summary Story of Odysseus and his travels after the Trojan War This story begins in medias res— in the middle of things Trojan war = 10 years; Odysseus has been wandering for 10 years 20 years after Odysseus left, Telemachus and Penelope are besieged by suitors for Penelope’s hand Telemachus is told by Athena to go seek his father Meanwhile we catch up with Odysseus, learn what he has been doing for the last 10 years, and witness his current efforts to get home.
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Unformatted text preview: Character of Odysseus • “cunning intelligence” • use of disguise • deceptive speech o are these good traits for a hero? • leader of men—is he a good leader of men? Epic Poetry • Poem which tells the life story of a hero or mythological person • Very long poem, often from the oral tradition • Literary elements include an invocation, beginning in medias res , the use of epithets, Deus ex machina, strong metrical rhythm • Other common features: super-hero, long journey, great scope of time and place, big cast of characters, travels into the underworld and back again, mythological creatures...
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