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Is Odysseus, The Greek Hero In Homer's Odyssey, A True Hero? : Odysseus As A Hero

862 words - 3 pages

The definition of a hero varies in lots of ways. Today, the concept of a hero has widened and heroes nowadays include political figures, religious leaders, and even the Hollywood superstars. The expansion of a concept has led to the misconceptions of a hero and it has become very difficult to identify a true hero in a society today. However, a real definition of a true hero is to be a "person who affects the society with one's great abilities that normal people may never have and thus who we admire or look up to." As it is defined that a hero affects the society, obviously, a hero reflects values, ideas, and beliefs of a particular time period. This perhaps is the most important meaning of a hero. Homer, one of the greatest Greek writers has portrayed a hero, who satisfies the definition mentioned above in an epic poem Odyssey. In Odyssey, Odysseus, the king of Ithaca and the greatest Greek warrior of the Trojan War, appears as the hero. Odysseus has a lot of qualities of a true hero. One of them is his leadership. His leadership is clearly noticeable by the way his crew acts. Although they knew that they had to sacrifice or risk their lives when they follow Odysseus, and Odysseus' attempt to reach their homeland had continuously failed, no one rebelled against him or complained about Odysseus being their leader. Instead, they obeyed him and followed him wherever he led. Strong determination and faith is another characteristic of Odysseus that makes him a hero. Odysseus had to suffer 20 years of pain until he could finally touch the ground of his homeland, Ithaca. If it weren't for his strong determination and undying faith, he wouldn't have reached his land. He didn't lose his faith and firm belief that he would make it to Ithaca no matter what in spite of all the obstacles he had to overcome for 20 years. It is interesting to note that Odysseus is one of the first Greek mythic heroes with brain, not just physical strength. He is best renowned for his cleverness. Every time his crew confronts a difficulty, Odysseus uses his reason, one of his gifted talent, rather than prompt emotion. His carefully planned out actions always solve out the problem. For example, after he makes Polyphemus blind by poking him in the eye, he tells him that his name is nobody to trick Polyphemus and prevent the retaliation from his friend Cyclops. Odysseus is generally known as a cunning and crafty man, but he is also a man of muscle and...

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