The Effect of the Sirens Essay
1036 Words5 Pages
The characters in Greek Mythology have multiple interpretations. Among these characters include the dangerous, yet gorgeous Sirens, bird-women who sit on a cliff singing bewitching songs that captivate the minds of innocent travelers and entice them to their deaths. In Homer’s The Odyssey and Margaret Atwood’s “Siren Song,” both poets provide different representations of the Sirens. Homer portrays the Sirens as irresistible in order to establish men as heroes, whereas Atwood depicts them as unsightly and pathetic so she can prove men are foolish and arrogant using imagery, diction, and point of view.
Homer depicts the Sirens as intriguing and desirable because he considers Odysseus as valiant. Homer describes Odysseus’ “'heart inside…show more content…
Once the men are drawn to the Sirens, they are stuck and there is no way for them to escape. Additionally, Homer explains Odysseus’ encounter with the Sirens from Odysseus’ point of view. The Sirens try to attract Odysseus by singing compliments to “famous Odysseus,” so he will assume he is the object of their desire (14). The Sirens are intelligent, and therefore determine what Odysseus’ true weaknesses: flattery and the desire for recognition. His faults are similar to other men; however no other men share Odysseus’ unique wish. When Odysseus sails by, they attack his weaknesses, just as they do to the other ships, but Odysseus already is prepared. The Sirens sing to him and promise he will be able to “[sail] on a wiser man” if Odysseus listens to their song (18). His plan almost fails because the song captivates Odysseus and, thus, attempts to join the Sirens, risking his life to gain the knowledge that the Sirens guarantee. Odysseus navigates himself through the sea with hopes of becoming more intelligent. Homer describes the Sirens as beautiful yet cunning because of their ability to identify men’s weaknesses easily. Their beauty attracts men and thus draws them toward their death. Homer’s view of the relationship between Odysseus and the Sirens prove that the Sirens are extremely tempting and the men cannot help but fall for them. Unlike Homer, Atwood attempts to prove that men, the usual heroes, are
The Negative Effects of Hubris in The Odyssey by Homer
587 WordsFeb 19th, 20182 Pages
Hubris causes excessive arrogance in people, and can lead to their downfall. In The Odyssey by Homer, Odysseus, a prideful warrior, tries to get back home to the island of Ithaca. Odysseus’ hubris ends up leading to many problems for himself and his crew. Hubris played a negative role in The Odyssey due to Odysseus revealing his identity to Polyphemus, not telling his crew about Aeolus’ bag of winds, and staying with Circe for a year. Odysseus’ hubris played a negative role when Odysseus revealed his identity to Polyphemus. Odysseus and his crew had just managed to escape from the Cyclops, Polyphemus, after driving a stake into his eye. But then, Odysseus told the blinded Cyclops his identity by shouting, “Cyclops – if any man on the face of the earth should ask you who blinded you, shamed you so- say Odysseus, raider of cities, he gouged out you eye, Laertes’ son who makes his home in Ithaca” (9, 558-562). Odysseus managed to tell Polyphemus his name, father, and home. Polyphemus then prayed to Poseidon, his father, to get revenge on Odysseus. Poseidon ended up killing Odysseus’ entire crew and delaying Odysseus for 10 years. None of those terrible consequences would have happened if Odysseus had suppressed his enormous pride. Odysseus’ hubris resulted in a lot of suffering for many people. Odysseus’ hubris prevents Odysseus and his crew from getting back to Ithaca again when Odysseus did…