Paideia Essay

856 words - 4 pages

“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 throughout the epic, will forever inspire me throughout any “journey” that I will go on during my life. A quite recent example of Odysseus’ persistence influencing my life would be the fact that I am a freshman in college trying to survive the hardships of college both academically and emotionally. As a college freshman entering this strange new phase in my life called adulthood, I am constantly becoming discouraged due to the challenging courses I am currently enrolled in. I sometimes even tell myself that life would be so much easier if I just decided to give up and work at a minimum wage job, and live in a cheap apartment for the rest of my life. Then I think about how Odysseus was in my spot more than a...

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