Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Odysseus Wrecks

Why is it that when a figure of elevated status (Odysseus in Homer's The Odyssey) can always manage to escape mass amounts of guilt and carnage because they are Heroes?
For example, a very modern model is Lindsey Lohan. (any more need be said?) She was released from prison days after being sent there... Because she is a star. In a more literary context, the Greek hero Odysseus returns from the epic Trojan Waronly to find his home overrun with unwelcome guests; suitors competing for his wife's hand. In Greek society at the time, a value known as Xenios was critical to society. Xenios was the fair and elevated treatment of guests in a person's presence or home. (Also valued by Christians, as the Ninth Circle of Hell is dedicated to those who betrayed friends family and guests.) Regardless of this, Odysseus strikes many of these men down. However, he is not punished by the gods. Does his status as a hero absolve him of the guilt of murdering his guests?

What Causes People to Look Back And Analyze Their Lives?

In the 13th century, a man named Dante Alighieri wrote a series of three stories, which he called The Divine Comedy.In his Inferno, Dante is led through Hell by the Roman poet Virgil. during his journey, he encounters many people he knew as well as many significant political figures of that era.

What would inspire a medieval man to think and write about his past experiences as if he were walking through Hell? What inspires man to question his past and analyze his previous experiences, think of his actions, and ultimately address his demons?