Use Of Contextual Devices In Homer's The Odyssey

Submitted By JLSchultz
Words: 635
Pages: 3

Matrix Homework One:
How does the use of poetic techniques in The Odyssey inform your understanding of the contextual concerns of Ancient Greece?
Society of Bronze Age Greece were concerned with a society structured around Patriarchy in which, social privilege males are given preference in terms of power, leadership, moral authority social privilege, and control of property. Also the value of Greek gods was held as intimately involved in the concerns of human lives and society. Homer’s The Odyssey clearly informs my understanding of the social concerns which are firmly established throughout the epic poem.
In The Odyssey the contextual concern of Patriarchal society is established through the interactions between Penelope and Telemachus when their estate is overrun with suitors. Telemachus’ commanding and condescending tone when he says “So, mother, go back to your quarters. Tend to your own tasks, the distaff and the loom and keep the women working hard as well” coupled with “she withdrew to her own room” portrays Penelope as a typical women in Patriarchal Greece, submissive and obeying reflecting the social systems of Ancient Greece. Furthermore, the use of metaphor when Telemachus’ announces “As for giving orders, men will see to that, but most of all: I hold the reins of power in this house” further cement’s the ideals of a Patriarchal Ancient Greece society in were men hold all the power over women portrayed by Telemachus have all the power or “holding the reins of power” over his mother. Therefore through these interactions clearly inform the reader of the social structures of Bronze Age Ancient Greece, were males are given preference in terms of power and leadership.
In Homer’s The Odyssey gods and goddesses play a direct role in the fates of the main characters and servers as both guides reflecting how society viewed gods as being intimately involved with mortal lives. In the opening of The Odyssey Athena talks at Olympus in defence of Zeus action towards Odysseus when she asks the rhetoric l question “Olympian Zeus have you no care for him in your lofty heat? We understand that Athena is completely engulfed in Odysseus struggles and conflicts set out by the gods themselves, as her “hear breaks for Odysseus.” Therefore we see that gods such as Athena do play a direct role in the fate of main characters like Odysseus and are involved in mortals lives as guides and protectors. On the other side of the spectrum, gods can also hinder mortals lives, still showing how they are involved in determining fate. We learn that the daughter of Atlas (Calypso) is holding Odysseys captive “forever trying to spellbind his heart with suave, seductive words and wipe all thought of Ithaca from mind” This use of hyperbole further emphasises the effect that Gods such as Calypso have on