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The Feelings Of Greeks Essay

897 words - 4 pages

Analyzing a story to find motivations and purpose is not the easiest task. However, in Ulysses by Alfred, Lord Tennyson, some of these traits are simpler to see. The motivations of humans will always remain somewhat of a mystery and thus it will always be a guess as to what the characters are truly thinking. As David Pizzi and Marc Cavazza state, "The duality between character and plot emphasizes the difficulty of reconciling a character’s perspective with the control exerted by the storyline." (Pizzi, Cavazza). The story Ulysses describes the hero and king Odysseus after his long journey in Troy and through the Mediterranean sea. The tale takes place years after his return and tells of his ...view middle of the document...

This is the support for his need to take on another adventure to faraway lands. This sense of hopefulness about his remaining time on this Earth is the driving force for his purpose, as previously stated. R.H. Horne supports this statement by elaborating, “Of the ‘Ulysses’ we would say that the mild dignity and placid resolve— the steady wisdom after the storms of life, and with the prospect of future storms – the melancholy fortitude, yet kingly resignation to his destiny which gives him a restless passion for wandering.....” (Horne).
All of this leads to one main attitude in Ulysses by Alfred, Lord Tennyson, which is that of boredom toward life in general. Ulysses has an attitude that has seen a lot of the world and has succumbed to the boredom of running a kingdom. Ulysses states, “I mete and dole/ Unequal laws unto a savage race/ That hoard, and sleep, and feed, and know not me/ I cannot rest from travel; I will drink/ Life to the lees.” (Tennyson, lines 3-7). This disinterest in his own country has grown into a sense of laziness for him, so as he must go away on an adventure in order to feel alive. He is in a state of passivity that he feels he must change; otherwise he will die knowing that he did not do everything in his power to do noble actions in the world. As Charles Kingsley states, “His ‘St. Simeon Stylites’ is his hostile picture of the fanatic, just as his ‘Ulysses’ is his friendly picture of the insatiable craving for new experience, enterprise, and adventure, when under control of a luminous reason and self-controlled will.” (Kingsley).
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