Odysseus

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Odysseus’ Journey: A Path to Redemption In Homer's The Odyssey, the protagonist Odysseus sets off on a 10 year journey to reclaim his throne as king of Ithaca after the Trojan War. Throughout his journey, Odysseus constantly struggles with temptation. Odysseus faces the challenge of overcoming his weaknesses to obtain redemption from the gods. Odysseus' chances of returning home are compromised by his flaws and those of his crew; however, Odysseus possesses the necessary virtues and qualities needed to reclaim his throne. One flaw that dooms Odysseus is hubris. When Odysseus and his crew become trapped in the Cyclops’s cave, Odysseus uses his intelligence and cleverness to escape. After the escape, Odysseus brags and reveals his real name to Polyphemus, yelling from his ship “…if any man…should ask you who blinded you, shamed you so—say Odysseus…he gouged out your eye” (Homer 9.558). Polyphemus is enraged and curses Odysseus' name to Poseidon, praying that his father will delay Odysseus’ return. Poseidon curses Odysseus and his men by causing storms and winds to prevent him and his crew from returning home. If Odysseus didn’t let his pride influence him in this instance, he may have returned to Ithaca earlier and saved the lives of many of his men.
Another example of Odysseus’ pride compromising the success of the journey was when the crew was facing the Sirens. The Sirens are dangerous sea enchantresses that lead sailors to their deaths through song. Instead of putting wax in his ears like he demanded of his crew, Odysseus insisted upon being attached firmly to the mast so he could hear the mermaid’s song. Odysseus begs and screams for the crew to row close, but when the crew refuses, Odysseus is angered and curses the crew. Odysseus jeopardized the crew for his own satisfaction, a very dangerous, selfish thing to do as a leader. In this situation…...

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