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introduction of western literature

By daisy840614 Mar 01, 2014 541 Words
In this semester, we’ve learned Homer’s work” odyssey. While in another course I take, I studied another work done by Alfred, Lord Tennyson called Ulysses which is based on the story of Odyssey. Now I want to make some analysis and contrasts between the two works. I think the biggest difference between the works is the features of the main character so now; I am going to analyze the traits of the main character. Odysseus in Odyssey is a combination of the self-made, self-assured man and the embodiment of the standards and mores of his culture. Though a strong and courageous warrior, he is most renowned for his cunning (sharp intellect). He is favored by the gods and respected and admired by the mortals. Even the wrath of Poseidon does not keep him from his homecoming. He wants to return home and live well in Ithaca; as a result, every step along the way is another test, sometimes, another battle. Now struggles to return to his kingdom in Ithaca: the most important thing for him. Tennyson reworks the figure of Ulysses by drawing on the ancient hero of Homer's Odyssey. In the poem, Ulysses still spoke to himself. He proclaims that he “cannot rest from travel” but feels compelled to live to the fullest and swallow every last drop of life. He has enjoyed all his experiences as a sailor who travels the seas, and he considers himself a symbol for everyone who wanders and roams the earth. His travels have exposed him to many different types of people and ways of living. They have also exposed him to the “delight of battle” while fighting the Trojan War with his men. Ulysses declares that his travels and encounters have shaped who he is: “I am a part of all that I have met,” he asserts. And it is only when he is traveling that the “margin” of the globe that he has not yet traversed and fade, and cease to goad him. Ulysses declares that it is boring to stay in one place, and that to remain stationary is to rust rather than to shine; to stay in one place is to pretend that all there is to life is the simple act of breathing, whereas he knows that in fact life contains much novelty, and he longs to encounter this. His spirit yearns constantly for new experiences that will broaden his horizons; he wishes “to follow knowledge like a sinking star” and forever grow in wisdom and in learning. After talking about the character, the second part I want to talk about my afterthoughts toward homer’s work. I like the protagonist a lot for he is a strong, courageous, noble man with a thirst for glory, and confidence in his authority. Odysseus’s quick thinking helps him out of some very tough situations. In this story I also see the love and trust between Odysseus and his wife. Though the goodness was willing to give him fortune and immorality, these could not stop him from missing and loving his wife. All he wanted to do was reunion with his wife and son and live well in hid kingdom. I think the bond between them is really impressive.

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