Beowulf Essay

Submitted By Treyiscool1178
Words: 428
Pages: 2

Ancient Beowulf
Beowulf is perhaps the most important work from Anglo-Saxon literature. The poem tells the story of Beowulf, a warrior from Geatland, which is now present-day Sweden. His self-imposed purpose in life is to help others, and eventually sacrifices his own life in doing so. Beowulf's battle with the dragon serves as a critique of the notion that Beowulf is a hero. Even though Beowulf was seeking glory, he still was a hero. Beowulf is a hero because the definition of a hero is “the willingness to make a personal sacrifice for the benefit of others” (Lickerman). Beowulf went out of his way to help the king’s people from the beast named Grendel. Some people may argue that he had no choice but to help the king and accomplish his mission. The reality of it is that “consequently all individual action can be seen only as either complying with or against the code” (Stitt). Another reason that Beowulf was still a hero is because of heroism. “The core of heroism revolves around the individual’s commitment to a noble purpose and the willingness to accept the consequences of fighting for that purpose” (Franco and Zimbardo). Some people would think that he was just doing it to assist others. “Heroism is different than altruism. Where altruism emphasizes selfless acts that assist others, heroism entails the potential for deeper personal sacrifice” (Franco and Zimbardo). In reality he was basically helping avenge the ones that had fallen in battle. In the middle of the poem Beowulf was a hero because he never said or thought that he could not do anything to…