How Heroes Have Changed Essay

How Heroes Have Changed Essay

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Over time the definition of a hero has changed. Today’s hero can be defined as a person who is admired for having performed a brave and courageous act. The definition of a hero has had different meanings during different time periods. The classical hero, the medieval hero, the romantic hero, and the modern hero all have different characteristics that define them.
The main characteristics of a classical hero are he must be born into royalty or half mortal, half god. A classical hero must perform extraordinary feats and be a noble character. The hero’s death must occur in an unusual way. A classical hero will fight for his own honor. An example of a classical hero would be Hercules (Norman).
A medieval hero has different characteristics from a classical hero. A medieval hero must be loyal and obedient of hierarchy. He must be a man who is seen as having good moral character. A medieval hero must also follow rules of chivalry, dress, courtesy, and code of conduct (Norman).
Unlike the medieval hero, the moral codes for the romantic hero are eccentric; the heroes get to make their own rules. Romantic heroes also do not have to be loyal to a hierarchy but instead are loyal to a certain project. Self knowledge for a romantic hero is valued above physical strength and endurance (Norman).
The modern hero seeks survival. Unlike the medieval hero, the modern hero does not have a code of ethics but instead have a code of behavior. The modern hero has internal and external struggles. His internal struggles are with addiction to liquor, money, and drugs. The hero’s external struggles are with corruption within the government and formal organizations (Norman).
Although the characteristics that defines each of these heroes are different from on...

... middle of paper ... have lost their lives to protect the United States. First responders and troops are the definition of a real hero.
Over time, the characteristics that define a hero have changed. Different cultures have had an impact on the characteristics that define a hero. The different types of heroes all have differences with one another. There are still some characteristics that have not changed in defining a hero. Bravery and courage are characteristics that have defined all heroes.

Works Cited

"Heroic Characters." Changing Minds. N.p., n.d. Web. 29 May 2014.
Norman, Vera. "Four Conceptions of the Heroic." Fellowship of Reason. N.p., 2005. Web. 29 May 2014.
"The Four Types of Heroes/The Hero Archetype Resource." N.p., 2011. Web. 29 May 2014.
Wilhelm, Jeffrey D., et al. A Brief History of Heroes. 2004. Glencoe Literature. New York: Glencoe McGraw-Hill, 2009. 69-72. Print.

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