Book Review: A Summary Of Odysseus

analytical Essay
1249 words
1249 words

Summary: Odysseus begins telling his story to the king and queen beginning from when he left Troy and begins with his home island of Ithaca. He tells of how he made Calypso believe that he loved her and then begins filling in details from the Trojan War to being captured by Calypso. He recounts the tails of the land of the Kikonians, the lotus eaters, and then of how the cyclops just wanted to eat all of them and Odysseus had to use trickery in order to escape the island, but is foolish enough to let the cyclops know his real name. Since the cyclops is a son of Poseidon, he has his father curse Odysseus. When Odysseus finally lands, he makes a sacrifice to Zeus who rejects it.
Commentary: The way the book is set up so it’s eight chapters in …show more content…

In this essay, the author

  • Narrates how odysseus recounts his encounter with the god of the winds, aiolos, who helps them by giving them a bag of winds to make it much easier to return to ithaca.
  • Analyzes how odysseus' crew had to let their curiosity get the better of them before he was awake to realize what was going on.
  • Analyzes how odysseus and his crew enter the underworld and use the blood to attract the shades before finding the shade of elpenor and agreeing to build a memorial for his death.
  • Opines that odysseus was a man of determination, minus sleeping with women on the side, because it would have been easier to stay with circe of calypso.
  • Analyzes how odysseus is able to use his cunning wit and precise choice of words to escape the cyclops, the lotus eaters, and the kikonians.

If Odysseus’ crew had been half brained enough to not open the bag, then everyone would have most likely returned home to Ithaca safe and sound just after the end of the war, but no, they had to let their curiosity get the better of themselves before the Odysseus was even awake to realize what was going on. His crew is not the only one who deserves blame though. If Odysseus had told them what was in the bag, there would’ve been no way that hiss crew would’ve messed with it. Also, even if Odysseus still hadn’t told them, he could’ve had the common knowledge that he needed to rest because being awake for nine straight days seems borderline suicidal. One can possibly understand his anxiousness to get back home though, having been gone ten years from his wife and son can do a toll on anyone and would certainly make them eager enough to rush things. However, that is no different than speeding at night to get back home as quickly as possible; while you will get there faster, the danger becomes exponentially higher and could result in being pulled over by a cop, or dying. Unfortunately for Odysseus, there was no maritime police so there was nothing stopping him from just chugging on forward. An interesting thing to point out is that Odysseus didn’t seem to trust his own crew with what was going on or even to sail the ship for …show more content…

While mourning for his mother, Teiresias appears and begins to drink the blood like the other shades. Teiresias warns Odysseus to not eat the cattle of Helios and that he alone will make it back to Ithaca alive and will then have to fight the suitors who are after his wife and then pray to Poseidon that he will live a long and happy life and die peacefully. Odysseus speaks to his mother’s ghost who is unable to hug him but tries three times. While taking a break from telling of his journey, Queen Arete decides that when Odysseus leaves he must leave with plenty of treasure and the king asks if he saw any friends from Troy in the underworld. Odysseus continues his tale and recounts of how he encountered Agamemnon as a shade and learns of his newfound hatred towards all women, except Penelope for her steadfast faithfulness to Odysseus. Odysseus then encounters other spirits such as Achilles, who is quite unhappy being dead and says that he would rather be a poor farmer, and Aias who killed himself over not getting the arms of Achilles during the Trojan War. Odysseus and his crew finally depart when more and more shades come to drink the

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