Preview
Preview

Iliad: Civilized vs Barbaric Essay

No Works Cited
Length: 831 words (2.4 double-spaced pages)
Rating: Yellow      
Open Document




- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Deciphering the Iliad
There are many controversies involving the Iliad, but the most important is about the characters in the Iliad demonstrating barbaric and civilized behavior. Questions about this and the answers can be found by looking at Hektor, Paris and Achilles. Hektor represents the civilized being, always looking for a peaceful resolution to a problem. Achilles refuses to fight and somewhat resembles Paris, the civilized coward. Paris would stay back and relax while the battle raged outside. Hektor was always out on the frontlines doing all he could to help his army. Achilles, angered by Agamemnon, betrays his own side and tells Zeus to bring a plague on the Achaeans, causing them to almost be wiped out. This was a barbarous act.
In the beginning, when Paris is first introduced, one sees him as an average hero, he steps forward and yells a war-cry at the beginning of the epic. As soon as Paris sees Menelaos, he retreats in fear, it would have to take divine intervention to get him back to battle Menelaos, which eventually does happen. The duel begins and Menelaos throws his spear, it clearly is going to sink into Paris but he is shielded by Aphrodite, and taken off to his castle where he waits out the rest of the battle in comfort. He refuses to rejoin the battle and then one realizes what he truly is, a coward. Although Paris is a coward he has refined taste and is a civilized coward. The act of dueling is unrefined, uncivilized and barbarous.

Throughout the Iliad there is corruption, Paris staying back in his home as the
battle rages on, and Achilles does the same. Agamemnon is kidnapping people in the
midst of battle, this causes Achilles to quit and nearly wipe out all of the...


... middle of paper ...


... one of the worst things that happened in the history of the U.S, this represents one of Achilles acts, barbarous and offensive. The UN seems to resemble the acts of Hektor, trying to get Paris to hand over Helen but both refuse and the war rages on. We share very similar things to the ancient Greeks, our civilizations share the lust to create, to harness new technologies. We both share similar sports, we still have the Olympics, we strive for better cultural advancements. There is also corruption among us, recently the Iraqi prisoners were being tortured by us in unnecessary ways, the Greeks going on a rampage at Troy and slaughtering innocent civilians, like we do today. We learn many things from the ancient Greeks, and we have made many cultural, technological and even military achievements from them, the basis of our culture owes a great deal to the Greeks.


Click the button above to view the complete essay, speech, term paper, or research paper

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »







This essay is 100% guaranteed.


Title Length Color Rating  
Justice and Love in the Iliad Essay - Simone Weil argues that the way Homer presents war and the use of force in the Iliad, in all of its brutality, violence, and bitterness bathes the work in the light of love and justice (pg 25). The point Weil is making is that by depicting the suffering of all of these men regardless of their side, or strength Homer equalizes them in a “condition common to all men”(pg 25). Because Homer equalizes them the reader can feel empathy, or at least compassion for all of the men. However while Weil is correct about how Homer’s descriptions of war and force reveal justice and love, she is wrong in thinking that justice and love are mere “accents” to the Iliad, and progress through the story “withou...   [tags: Iliad] 974 words
(2.8 pages)
Better Essays [preview]
The Shield of Achilles in Homer's Iliad Essay - Throughout the Iliad the warriors' dream of peace is projected over and over again in elaborate similes developed against a background of violence and death. Homer is able to balance the celebration of war's tragic, heroic values with scenes of battle and those creative values of civilized life that war destroys. The shield of Achilles symbolically represents the two poles of human condition, war and peace, with their corresponding aspects of human nature, the destructive and creative, which are implicit in every situation and statement of the poem and are put before us in something approaching abstract form; its emblem is an image of human life as a whole....   [tags: Iliad Essays] 1091 words
(3.1 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Homer’s Iliad - The Shield of Achilles Essay - Homer’s Iliad - The Shield of Achilles Homer devotes the final passages of Book 18 of The Iliad to the description of the shield of Achilles. Only a quarter of the description concerns warfare, the essential grist of the epic. Instead, the bulk of the description presents a peaceful society and rural idylls, a curious choice for the most ferocious warrior of the Greeks, and an odd thing for both armies to fear. A narrative emerges from the scenes of the shield, and it is this that fits Achilles and repulses everyone else....   [tags: Iliad essays]
:: 1 Works Cited
1597 words
(4.6 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
The True Hero of Homer's The Iliad Essay - The True Hero of Homer's The Iliad The Iliad is a story in which many men should be recognized as great war heroes. They all show a tremendous amount of courage to fight in such a barbaric battle. But this paper?s main focus is between two great leaders of opposing sides. Achilles, who represents the Achaians and Hector, who represents the Trojans. Though both show their bravery during many different instances in the poem, it?s quite obvious to the reader who the better of the two is....   [tags: Home Poetry Poem Iliad Essays] 880 words
(2.5 pages)
Better Essays [preview]
Essay on Cruelty and Compassion in Homer’s Iliad - Cruelty and Compassion in The Iliad The Iliad, in that it is more about the Greek hero Achilles than any other particular person, portrays the Achaean in surprisingly shocking light at times throughout the story. In his encounter with Lycaon, who had previously been taken prisoner by Achilles long ago, Achilles demonstrates the extents to which his warlike demeanor can go. Yet it is equally surprising that he is capable of impressive compassion, as is depicted elsewhere in the Iliad. What seems to be an almost unbelievable fluctuation in attitude and mood is far from unexplained or contradictory, however....   [tags: Iliad essays]
:: 1 Works Cited
1316 words
(3.8 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
The Role Of Zeus in Homer's Iliad Essay examples - The Role Of Zeus in Homer's Iliad In the era of Homer, divine intervention was thought to be typical, and one of his foremost works, The Iliad, reflects this. Nearly all of the Greek gods are involved in the outcome of the Trojan War, which happens to be the background story of this epic poem. The gods are used by Homer to add twists on an otherwise standard plot of war. I shall concentrate on Zeus, however, and reflect on his actions and their outcomes on the Trojan War, and more importantly, the story of The Iliad....   [tags: Iliad essays] 1952 words
(5.6 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
The Dual Role of Gods in The Iliad Essay - The Dual Role of Gods in The Iliad      With even a cursory exposure to ancient Greek texts, it is obvious that the gods and goddesses are very important in traditional Greek culture. As literary figures in mythos and specific poetry and drama, the gods dabble in the life of man, predict his fate, and routinely thwart any attempt for him to entirely forge his own future. But for those of us who are not extensively schooled in antiquities, it is hard to pinpoint exactly what the gods are to the ancient Greeks, and what they are to us as readers of literature who live outside the culture....   [tags: Iliad essays]
:: 2 Works Cited
1147 words
(3.3 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Essay on Women of the Iliad - Women of the Iliad In the Iliad we saw women as items of exchange and as markers of status for the men who possessed them (Chryseis and Briseis, whom Agame mnon and Achilles argue over in Book I). We saw them in their normal social roles as mothers and wives (Hecuba, Andromache in Book VI). We saw stereotypical characterizations of them as fickle (Helen in Book VI), seductive, and deceitful (Hera in Book XIV). We see them as an obstacle that the male hero has to overcome or resist to fulfill his heroic destiny (Andromache's entreaties to Hector in Book VI)....   [tags: Homer Women Iliad]
:: 1 Works Cited
1237 words
(3.5 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Femininity in Homer’s Iliad Essay - Femininity in Homer’s Iliad In Homer’s Iliad, predominant feminine presence inspires the events of the poem and the destinies of the men involved. This feminine presence is not a product of the actions and decisions of the women in the poem, but rather a conceptual, creative feminine force without which the poem and even human life would not exist. Homer personifies this presence in nature and maintains it through the voice of the Muse, his inspiration. There is a deeper essence of a feminine presence in the poem, however, which lies in the characteristics of life itself....   [tags: Iliad essays]
:: 1 Works Cited
1888 words
(5.4 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
Essay on The Iliad's Ending - Homer's Iliad is commonly understood as an epic about the Trojan War, but its meaning goes deeper than that. The Iliad is not only a story of the evolution of Achilleus' persona, but at times it is an anti-war epic as well. The final book proposes many questions to the reader. Why not end with the killing of Hektor. Most stories of war conclude with the triumphant victory of good over evil, but in the Iliad, the final thoughts are inclined to the mourning of the defeated Hektor, which accentuates the fact that good has not triumphed over evil, but simply Achilleus triumphed over Hektor....   [tags: Homer Iliad Analysis] 908 words
(2.6 pages)
Better Essays [preview]