Telemachus’ and Odysseus’ Learning Experience Essay

Telemachus’ and Odysseus’ Learning Experience Essay

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Throughout The Odyssey by Homer; Odysseus and Telemachus are faced with an extensive journey that leads them to profound development. At the beginning of the epic, Telemachus is a young boy and doesn’t know how to protect his home from the suitors that are attempting to pursue it. Odysseus has been gone for years, and was unable to teach his son how to be a leader or how to defend himself. Meanwhile, Odysseus has been on his journey home enduring all the obstacles of adventure, The Gods, and hardship. They each grow and flourish throughout the poem; Odysseus learns the importance of his presence in his family life and Ithaca. While Telemachus learns how to be a leader, mature as a man and forgive his father for his absence.
At the beginning of the story, Telemachus needs to manage the suitors who have assumed control over his home and hope to marry his mother solely to gain control over Ithaca he says, “For my mother, against her will, is beset by suitors, own sons to the men who are greatest hereabouts. These shrink from making the journey to the house of her father Ikarios, so that he might take bride gifts for his daughter and bestow her on the one he wished…” The suitors are trying to pursue his mother and take over his home, his life is at risk as heir to the crown. He's simply just in the way of the suitors wishing to steal the thrown. Telemachus needs to mature quickly and learn how to defend himself. Transitioning from boy to man he begins his journey with an innocent soul and sets out to help his mother. He confronts several obstacles along the way, but matures as a man and warrior.
Telemachus is losing faith in his father’s return,
“I should not have sorrowed so over his dying if he had gone down among his companions i...

... middle of paper ...

...learns the value of family and his importance to the city of Ithaca. During his absence, the civilization and hospitality has been depleted. However, he has an epiphany after visiting the Hades and realizes he must save his home and his family. As the epic comes to an end, Odysseus appears to be more clever, wise, and insightful King than he may have been had he come directly home from Troy. Although he struggles at first, by the end of the story Telemachus has learned how a King should act. Although he may not meet his father's level as a ruler, his actions and growth clearly indicate that he'll be a great one. Life is a journey in itself, and the lessons it teaches are never meant to go unnoticed. Both Telemachus and Odysseus realize this along their very different yet significant journeys.

Works Cited

Fagles, Robert. The Odyssey. New York: Viking, 1996. Print.

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