The Long-Suffering and Self-Pitying Odysseus Essay

What would it take to do Odysseus. the celebrated warrior and the pride of all Greece. call uncontrollably? Surely. he must be put through some kind of utmost physical hurting that no other person could last or possibly he is even forced to watch the awful slaughtering of his companions. But more frequently than non. it is merely mere words and memories. driven on by self-pity. non atrociousnesss committed against his crew. that make Odysseus call. Alternatively of moving as a compassionate leader who grieves for his lost friends. Odysseus calls to indulge his ain sense of sorrow at his jobs. and uses this to derive attending from others. By analyzing Odysseus’ eruptions of heartache. it becomes obvious that his selfishness and pride are at the very bosom of the obstructions he has faced on his journey place.
Odysseus calls to fulfill his feelings of solitariness and desperation at being so hated by the Gods. When we foremost encounter Odysseus. he is sitting entirely on Calypso’s island. “weeping. his eyes ne’er dry. his sweet life fluxing off / with the cryings he wept for his defeated journey home” ( 5. 168-169 ) . At this point. Odysseus has been a captive on Calypso’s island for seven old ages. and has an intelligibly forlorn mentality sing his journey place. However. Odysseus spends every dark on the island moving as a lover to the beautiful goddess. whom he even admits is far more lovely and alluring than the married woman he yearns to return to. Though he pines for Penelope. his Acts of the Apostless of changeless unfaithfulness show that his guilt is non plagued by his actions.
He is described as being an “unwilling lover” ( 5. 172 ) . but there is no grounds to propose that Odysseus feels he is perpetrating a offense against his married woman. Alternatively. Odysseus is described as being “no longer pleased” ( 5. 170 ) by Calypso. which suggests that at one point Odysseus may hold been really satisfied with his state of affairs. until he became homesick once more. It is an admirable trait that Odysseus so longs to travel place. but his self- commiseration twenty-four hours in and twenty-four hours out is anything but admirable. He seems to be holding his bar and eating it excessively. After seven old ages. he is still wallowing in unhappiness. unable to see that his destiny of being alive and good ( and seduced every night ) is still a much more favourable result than what his crew encountered. His selfishness merely lets him see “how long I have suffered! ” ( 7. 181 ) .

Odysseus besides uses his cryings to pull strings others into sympathising with him. When Odysseus eventually gets off Calypso’s island. he is beset by still more jobs. He finally finds shelter with Alcinous. the male monarch of Phaeacia. As is the usage. he is the receiver of great cordial reception and is made to experience at place. even though his hosts have no thought who he is. However. one dark after banqueting. the bard Demodocus sings about the struggle between Odysseus and Achilles during the Trojan War. At this point. Odysseus becomes so overwrought and overcome with emotion that he “hid his face and wept” ( 8. 109 ) . The text besides says that he is “ashamed his hosts might see him casting tears” ( 8. 103 ) . but why is he shouting in the first topographic point? The bard is non even singing about all that Odysseus has suffered. and is merely mentioning to his statement with Achilles. which was a prophesied triumph mark.
It is really possible that Odysseus is shouting because he wants to be found out. These people evidently adore the Odysseus they know through narratives. so wouldn’t they worship the flesh and blood version if they were of all time to run into him? Alternatively of merely stating. “I am Odysseus” . he alternatively waits. calls a 2nd clip until his heartache is publically noticed. leting people to experience regretful for him and inquire what would do him so much hurting. This gives Odysseus the perfect chance to state the atrocious narrative of his trip place. which he does. full of the problems that could hold been avoided had Odysseus restrained his pride and selfishness. The shame that Odysseus might experience at openly shouting in forepart of aliens is outweighed by the satisfaction he gets out of stating his narrative. because wretchedness does so love company.
Odysseus’s pride besides prevents him from demoing regard towards his work forces. by non minding their advice and by non decently mourning their ill-timed deceases. At Alcinous’ tribunal. Odysseus recounts his experience with the Cyclops. The whole problem with this one eyed monster begins when Odysseus decides to linger in the Cyclops’s cave after eating his nutrient. to see “what gifts he would give” ( 9. 258 ) . Alternatively of welcoming the Achaeans. the monster decides to eat the work forces who had impolitely eaten his nutrient. In sudden daze and horror. Odysseus and his work forces “wept and cried aloud” ( 9. 331 ) . Finally. through a clever program by Odysseus. he and his work forces escape. but about decease once more because of his pride. Teasing back to the Cyclops. Odysseus reveals who he is. which allows the monster to about fall in their ships. and besides to publish a ailment to Poseidon that he should non allow Odysseus return place. Poseidon hears this. and as a consequence. Odysseus and his crew are from so on beset by job after job.
Had Odysseus listened to his crew who begged him to go forth the cave before the Cyclops returned and besides to non boast his individuality to the monster. the work forces would hold made it safely place. Even after witnessing the cannibalism of some of his crew. Odysseus is merely “glad to get away our decease / yet sick at bosom for the companions we had lost” ( 9. 630 ) . He does non look to be excessively devastated by everything that has merely happened to him. expletive and all. Possibly it is because he is surrounded by others who portion the same destiny. and aren’t as willing to be every bit sympathetic as a group of aliens hearing the narrative from a legendary hero would be.
Odysseus besides tells the narrative of the Laestrygonians. who eat a high figure of Odysseus’ crew. Once once more. Odysseus is “sick at heart” ( 10. 147 ) . but feels small else for his dead friends and does non cry at all for their memory. When his crew begins to mourn for those lost. Odysseus about seems fed up and says “They explosion into calls. howling. streaming unrecorded cryings / that gained us nil – what good can come of heartache? ” ( 10. 221 ) . At this point it becomes really obvious that Odysseus merely deems it necessary to shout. when he is the one being wept for. He has no job shouting in forepart of aliens who are unwittingly praising him. he sees nil incorrect with shouting mundane for seven old ages because he is marooned with a beautiful goddess. yet there is something uneconomical about crying for work forces who were viciously killed and eaten. all because he felt the demand to state the Cyclops that he. the great Odysseus. was the 1 who blinded him.
While pride may hold been the ruin of Odysseus. without it he would ne’er hold reached the position of a hero. His pride and desire for glorification were a major drive force behind all his great schemes and war attempts. Without his strong self-esteem. Odysseus would hold alternatively been merely another expendable member of his crew. Yes. the selfishness of the crew is besides evident when they open the bag of air currents and blow the ship off class. but actions like these are to be expected from work forces who are of such low importance in the heroic poem that they are non even named. But from Odysseus. the reader should demand a higher degree of criterions. and expect him to move responsible for the work forces whose lives are entrusted into his attention. When Odysseus does non shout after his work forces are slaughtered and alternatively goes on with his work. it appears that he is merely moving as a strong leader. But when you consider other minutes when he is really weak and does shout openly. it is apparent to see that he merely weeps for those deserving crying for. And to Odysseus. the lone one worth casting a tear for is himself.
Thesis: Alternatively of moving as a compassionate leader who grieves for his lost friends. Odysseus calls to indulge his ain sense of sorrow at his jobs. and uses this to derive attending from others. By analyzing Odysseus’ eruptions of heartache. it becomes obvious that his selfishness and pride are at the very bosom of the obstructions he has faced on his journey place.
Subordinate Ideas:
1. Cries out of ego commiseration and solitariness
2. Cries to pull strings others
3. Does non esteem shipmates
a. Does non listen to their advice and suffers the effects
B. Does non decently mourn them when they die partially because of his actions
4. Pride and selfishness allow Odysseus to go a hero

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