“Education means deliberately molding human character in accordance with an ideal.” Werner Jeager argued this statement, in his novel Paideia in order to prove his point that literature in a child’s youth can be a rather large influence on the way a child develops and grow as they progress into the beginning stages of adulthood. With this being said, this argument can be accurately portrayed in my own life as well. Due to the fact that I enjoy reading both inside and outside of the classroom, I do base the person I potentially want to be off of the characters that are portrayed throughout my readings, similar to the idea that several people are influenced by what they see on television or in movies. One of the greatest influences in my life from a literary work would be Odysseus from the epic, The Odyssey of Homer. Odysseus not only holds several positive qualities that I look up to, he also holds numerous negative qualities that inspire me to be a better person and not repeat any of Odysseus’ poor decisions.
In The Odyssey of Homer, Odysseus has a rather respectable overall character, that allows him to be successful in several areas of his life regardless of the hardships and obstacles that are presented to him on his journey back to his family. Along with Odysseus’ admirable character, Odysseus also holds several positive qualities that qualify him for his nickname, “the man of many ways.” For example, Odysseus is persistent in his journey back to reunite with his wife, Penelope, and son, Telemachos. He makes this very clear to Kalypso when he announces that all he wants “is to go back to my house and see my day of homecoming,” instead of settling for an tranquil lifestyle with her. This persistence that was shown throughou...
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...ositive quality to have, in moderation, due to the success that can and will arise from pride. Yet, when pride turns into arrogance, things can back fire on one, hindering potential success.
Both the positive and negative aspects of Odysseus character have inspired me to reach my potential in all areas of my life. The positive qualities of Odysseus, such as his persistence, drive, and dedication, have set bars that I have yet to reach in life, but have the expectations of reaching in my future. Yet, the negative aspects of Odysseus character, allow me to have a good idea of qualities I do not want to hold as a person. With this being said, I use Odysseus’ bad decision and qualities as a model to rise above from. Although Odysseus is considered a fictional character, he has a rather large influence on my life, proving Jeager’s argument to be valid within my life.
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