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Introduction to Epics and The Odyssey

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Lindsey Hyslop

on 23 September 2013

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Transcript of Introduction to Epics and The Odyssey

Introduction to Epics and The Odyssey
What is an epic?
Epics are long, narrative poems that tell the adventures of heroes who, in some way, embody the values of their civilization.
Examples of Epics
What is an epic hero?
The epic hero is a "larger-than-life" person who embodies the values of his or her culture.
Who is Homer?
Not much is known about the life of Homer. He is said to be the Greek poet who is credited for writing both The Iliad and The Odyssey. Many sources say that Homer was also blind.
Famous Works
The Iliad is the primary model for an epic of war.
The Odyssey is the model for an epic of the long journey
plot centers around an epic hero
involves deeds of superhuman strength
vast setting
involves supernatural beings or forces
elevation of style
narrator is objective and omniscient
story starts in medias res
references well-known warriors
includes formal speeches
epic similes
Characteristics of an Epic Hero
goes on a quest/journey
"live on after death": they are forever remembered by those who live after them
a regular human whose actions and accomplishments set him or her apart
overcomes great obstacles and opponents
demonstrates great skill or wit
Examples of Epic Heroes
Conventions Explained
epic simile
, also known as a homeric simile, is a comparison of two things developed over several lines of verse.
is a descriptive phrase that presents a particular trait of a person or thing. (Alexander the Great)
In Medias Res
" is starting a story in the middle of the action. The author will then use a series of flashbacks to continue the story.
: a formal plea or prayer for aid or help in telling a story. In Ancient Greek culture, the invocation was usually addressed to a muse.

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