Critical Lens Essay for “The
Oliver Fox once stated, “Characters in literature become heroes when they model behaviors and characteristics we, as the reader, admire.” In other words, this quote suggests people are drawn to relatable behaviors and characteristics readers often value and idolize. This quote is true when one considers literary elements such as conflict and characterization. Due to conflict, characters are often forced to express heroic traits. In the epic poem, “The Odyssey” by Homer, the characters of Odysseus and Telemachus both prove the quote is true as they possess characteristics readers would see as heroic. Homer uses conflict to illustrate these traits.
In the epic poem, “The Odyssey” by Homer, the character Telemachus shows many heroic traits, such as determination, patience, and optimism. This character becomes a hero when he models behaviors and characteristics the reader admires. For example, Telemachus’s thoughts throughout the poem are mainly that of determination in order to find his father. His heroic traits show through when he strives toward determination. In the poem, Telemachus states, “I cannot stay here. If my father may live, I must find him” (43). Telemachus’s words in this quote clearly show he is strongminded; never giving up his search for Odysseus. Determination is the heroic trait portrayed to the reader. He moved along when he didn’t hear news of his father from Menelaus (134). This action shows patience. Telemachus doesn’t want to stay in one place for too long; proving he is resolute, yet patient while looking for Odysseus. Menelaus and Athena both give him hope that his father is still alive (20 & 37). His thoughts show he is optimistic about his father’s life, which makes the reader admire this trait. Lastly, his actions support the idea that in literature, ...
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