Brave And Confident Odysseus

In the novel, “The Odyssey,” the author Homer wants us to understand that Odysseus uses strong leadership to overcome challenges and save his crew. Throughout the book, Odysseus’ main goal was to get himself and his crew mates back to Troy, their home land. Odysseus attempted to achieve this by being an effective leader that was determined and committed to leading his crew mates to survival.

One example of when Odysseus used strong leadership to save his crew was when they were on the land of the Lotus eaters and his men consumed the intoxicating and distracting Lotus. For instance, the novel states, “I drove them, all three wailing, to the ships,/ tied them down under their rowing benches,/ and called the rest: ‘All hands aboard;/ come, clear the beach and no one taste/ the Lotus, or you lose your hope of home” (IX. 106-110).

Homer uses the words “drove them” and “tied them down” to describe Odysseus’ actions as a strong leader. Odysseus purposely forces his crew mates to leave the island and stop consuming the lotus so they would continue their journey and not just give up their memory of family and home. This correlates with Odysseus using strong leadership as he was responsible by guiding his men away from the harmful and toxic lotus, which at the end saved his men and helped them overcome a challenging obstacle.

As the novel unfolds Homer demonstrates that Odysseus’ character develops as a stronger leader since he learns to make his crews survival a priority no matter the situation. Another example of when Odysseus uses strong leadership to help rescue his crew was when they got trapped in the Cyclops’s cave. For example, in the book it states, “My name is Nohbdy: mother, father, and friends,/ everyone calls me Nohbdy… Drunk, hiccuping,/ took him like any creature of liquor and bits of men./ Now, by the gods, I drove my big hand spike/ deep in the embers, charing it again,/ and cheered my men along with battle talk/ to keep their courage up: no quitting now.” (IX. 397-398 and 404-409).

Homer uses the words, “courage” and “cheered my men” to show that Odysseus remains confident and is able to encourage his men to keep fighting in the difficult situation. In this situation, Odysseus’ quick thinking allowed him to trick the Cyclops and create a plan to escape the cave which ended up saving all of his companions from certain death with the Cyclops.

This refers to how Odysseus used strong leadership to save his crew when they were in danger with the Cyclops as his wise planning and determination encouraged his men and ended up saving them from potentially dying. Overall, Homer portrays many examples throughout the book supporting the idea that Odysseus uses strong leadership to overcome challenges and save his crew.

The Importance Of Hospitality

In the Epic The Odyssey by Homer, Homer emphasizes the sacrifices made by the brave heroic Odysseus as he faces many harsh obstacles fighting in the Trojan War for the past 10 years. This Epic portrays many emotional and mental values as it is depicted by many brave heroes who were willing to make very difficult decisions. The value of relationships and hospitality is revealed throughout the novel.

The author acknowledges the value of culture of the characters as there is a constant repetition of hospitality. Throughout Odysseus’s journey, multiple characters come along his path as they each hold their own moral. Many of these characters represent the constant repetition of hospitality shown as they are pleasing the Gods by sharing and providing items for people in need, knowing that some type of incentive will be given back to them in return for completing a good deed. In this novel, hospitality is an important part of honor and negotiation of relationships. Odysseus acknowledges the fact that Aeolus hosted [him] one entire month…he gave [him] a sack, the skin of a full-grown ox, binding inside the winds that howl from every quarter (Homer 231). His acknowledgement reveals the hospitality between the characters since it is told that Aeolus was kind enough to host Odysseus and his men for an entire month and provide him with a sack of wind, which will come to be useful later on. Many other good deeds are done by the characters throughout the novel in order to show the constant repetition of hospitality.

When Odysseus is at King Alcinous’ palace, [he] hid his face while he wept. His weeping went unmarked by all the others; only Alcinous, sitting close behind him, noticed his guest’s tears, heard the groan in the man’s labored breathing and said at once to the master’s mariners around him our loyal friends at banquets. Now we go out again and test ourselves in contests…so our guests can tell his friends…how far we excel the world. (Homer 192). A good deed can be shown in this passage as it is shown that King Alcinous is taking good care of his guest, Odysseus, as he is trying his best to recover Odysseus from crying by attempting to hold a fun contest. King Alcinous refers to Odysseus as our loyal friend (Homer 192), showing how he treats him with respect and truly cares about his well-being.

Imagery is crucial in the Odyssey as it reveals clarification for the relationships that the characters have with each other. Homer intelligently uses imagery to paint dramatic pictures of the relationships between the characters. It is revealed that Odysseus’s men does not have any trust in him as the crews began to mutter among themselves, sure I was hauling troves of gold of silver home, the gifts of open Aeolus…Now this Aeolus loads him down with treasure. Favoritism, friend to friend! ?Hurry let’s see what loot is in that sack”(Homer 231). When his men opened his bag of wind it blew them so off course that they were so close that they could see Ithaca, but it was because the relationship between Odysseus and his men that threw him off course; the men does not have any trust in Odysseus.

They would not have opened the bag of wind in the first place if they had trust in Odysseus, but they did not as they thought that Odysseus was going to keep all the gold and silver to himself. The use of imagery also represents the strong father-son bond that Odysseus and Telemachus have with each other. Unlike other father-son relationships, it is the great amount of distance between Odysseus and Telemachus that formed the strong bond between them. Telemachus must earn his father’s respect by fighting his own battles. Through the distance between them, they are able to establish their share of beliefs and values.. When the father and son finally meet, salt tears rose from the wells of longing in both men/So helpless they cried pouring out tears,/ and might have gone weeping till sundown (Homer 268). Homer’s use of imagery strongly illustrates the emotional reaction when Odysseus and Telemachus is finally reunited. The son and father was able to share their beliefs and values through the distance that held them apart, making their bond even more close.

In The Odyssey, Homer highlights the importance of hospitality between the characters in order to form a loyal relationship. This Epic is portrayed by fearless heroes who were able to sacrifice in order to receive. Having the ability to fight for your own battles truly shows your worth and loyalty to others as it shows how much you are willing to put yourself through.

Female Characters In The Odyssey

The Odyssey, written by Homer at the end of the 8th century is one of the most influential pieces of literature in our society. Through this epic, Homer was able to compose a piece of literature that remains prominent in classrooms today. The Odyssey proves to to be influential, in that scholars today are still learning from Homer’s creation centuries later. Homer’s, The Odyssey was one of the only epics of its time to have such prominent female characters.

Through the character’s and plot, Homer challenges ancient greek social standings by making women a prominent key to the plot and life of protagonist’s, Odysseus and Telemachus. In ancient greek, a woman’s place was often lacking in comparison to men, but, through the Odyssey, it is demonstrated just how important women are. The women in The Odyssey proved that a woman has the power to make or break a man’s purpose. Homer created personalities and roles for females in the epic that contradicted true ancient greek beliefs. Throughout the epic, it is demonstrated just how powerful female presence is.

One must understand the real life roles of women in Greece during the time to then understand the different lives the women in the Odyssey led. Women in Greece at this time led a life of subservience to the man. Their main role and duties were to bear children and be caretakers of the home. Society was ruled and governed by men with little regard to the opinions of women. Women rarely held any position higher than that of the wife of so and so. They were married at the young age of 13 to 14 and the whole role of a women’s education was to prepare her for a family (Cartwright, 2016). If, as a woman, you were not married, it was believed that you had no other calling in life. In the eyes of the law, women were under the complete authority of their husbands (Cartwright, 2016). It is apparent that women’s lives in ancient greece were far from glamorous. Most of a woman’s life was to satisfy and obey her husband. In the Odyssey, some traditional roles of women are depicted and evident throughout the story; However, Homer took this opportunity and made the females in his story lead a very different purpose.

Homer put women in non-traditional roles that were unheard of in everyday life. The women in the Odyssey were given heightened personalities that allowed their characters to develop with as the story continues. Throughout the journey, it was women that helped guide the way or women who were able to deter God-like men such as Odysseus. Without these women Odysseus’ epic journey may have had a different outcome. Some women tempted him and some women would make sure he was on the right track to make it safely back home. A whole new identity and purpose was created for the woman. There are three different types of women throughout The Odyssey; humans such a Penelope, goddesses like Athena and even mythical creatures such as Calypso. Odysseus encounters each one of these women and is affected by them all.

Penelope, Odysseus’ husband is a very loyal and faithful wife to him. She fights off suitors for years and raises their son Telemachus alone in hopes of his return. Even with all of the suitors begging for Penelope she patiently awaits her one true love to hopefully return home. After the war ends, Odysseus is unaccounted for and Penelope must wait 10 more years to be reunited with her husband. The reader is drawn to Penelope because of her goodness. Her loyalty during a 20 span period is unwavering. The relationship of Penelope and Odysseus is uncommon in its devotion and romance. Most relationships end in all sorts of tragedies, but not the marriage between Odysseus and Penelope. This is impart of Penelope herself. Without this overwhelming loyalty Penelope has for Odysseus their relationship could have ended in tragedy. Penelope was a beacon of hope and showed Odysseus the power of faithfulness in a relationship.

A Trully Hero Odysseus

The Odyssey, created by Gareth Hinds is a translation based on Homer’s epic poem, and it is a graphic novel telling the story of Odysseus, a mortal man and the King of Ithaca. He leaves for the Trojan War when his son, Telemachus, is only a baby. Odysseus and his crew confront a lot of problems, but most of time, always find a way to escape them.

When his crew makes a fatal mistake though, Odysseus finds himself trapped on the island of Ogygia, and home of the Nymph Calypso. The poem tells of his hardships trapped by Calypso to when he defeats the suitors that infest his home. Odysseus gets help by the gods to help him escape this land in which he is trapped. The gods don’t always help him though. He has struggles with some of these gods on his way back to his homeland where suitors ask for his wife’s hand in marriage: due to Odysseus appearing dead to many. Through this hardship, Odysseus expresses many values in the Odyssey to himself and his comrades: suggesting that he is a hero. A hero in modern times is considered to be a person with exceptional courage, achievements, and noble qualities according to Two values truly show that he is a hero for our times: his great leadership through tough times and his great use of self-control.

Odysseus encounters many hardships along the way of returning home, and even when he arrives home, but no matter the hardship Odysseus shows exceptional leadership to the people he leads, showing a great quality for a hero in our times. One of these situations is shown when Odysseus and his men get trapped in the cave of Poseidon’s son, the cyclops Polyphemus. When Polyphemus realizes that Odysseus and his men are trapped in his cave, he has the intention to eat every one of them. Odysseus knows that he will not stop no matter what they do, and he’ll never let them go: After devouring two of my men, the cyclops lay down to sleep.

He [does] not fear us, for even if we could kill him, we could not possibly move that giant stone. We [are] trapped (98). Odysseus then knows the only thing to do is to devise a plan to escape the cave with his crew. Odysseus comes up with the plan after four of his men are devoured, but he wants to make a flawless plan that will get as many of his crew out that he possibly can. Odysseus follows through with the plan after two more of his crew are devoured: first he gives Polyphemus the strong wine. Polyphemus seems to like the wine and wants to give a Odysseus a gift: Your gift, [Odysseus], is that I will eat you last! (101). This truly highlights that Odysseus needs to make the plan right, or Polyphemus would truly kill them in the harshest way. The wine makes Polyphemus fall asleep, and gives Odysseus time to poke his eye with a sharpened hot log. This causes him to scream in pain, calling Odysseus by his given name, Nobody: Nobody! Nobody’s trying to kill me! (104).

When no one responds do to Odysseus’ trickery, Polyphemus finds the boulder blocking the exit and moves it: this was Odysseus’ plan. He and his crew also have to get past the cyclops, and so they attach themselves to the bottom of the Polyphemus’ fleecy rams. This allows them to slip right past him, and allowing them to escape. Although some of his men die, Odysseus acts as quickly as he can to form a perfect plan that allows most to escape unharmed. This truly shows that Odysseus is a great leader and is never willing to give up on him and his comrades, and he is always willing to lead even under the worst of circumstances. Another example of Odysseus’ great leadership is shown when Odysseus has to confront Scylla. Odysseus knows that Scylla, the six-headed monster, will kill and devour six of his men. Odysseus also knows that fighting back against the creature won’t pay off, and all the creature would do is continue to devour his men. Odysseus asks if he can defeat Scylla, Circe responds, Stubborn old campaigner, put that idea out of your mind. She is too terrible by far. If you stop to fight, she will take six more [of your men]. No, tell your men to row for their lives. That is your only chance (138).

Odysseus chooses to listen to Circe’s warning words and keeps the crew in the dark about the creature: this is because it would cause them to freeze up allowing more of his men to get devoured by Scylla. Even though he knows he can’t defend his men entirely, he still arms himself to possibly protect his men. When Scylla attacks, only six of his men were devoured. Although, it was still six and not zero, and he still has the best intention to protect his men from all that may harm them. Also, the first six men he has no control over, and he does his best to not lose any more. Another example of Odysseus appearing to be a exceptional leader is when he leads his men to victory against the suitors. Odysseus is looking to take vengeance on the suitors for taking advantage of his home and trying to take his wife’s hand in marriage. He wants to make sure that failure isn’t an option. He spends a long time disguised as the stranger who begs and only gives news of Odysseus.

Little did anyone know that he is Odysseus. He tells Telemachus of his return and gets everything ready for the fight. He has every advantage against the suitors, and one example of this is said by Odysseus during the meeting with Telemachus: When it is time, I will give you a nod. At that signal, gather up all of the weapons in the hall and lock them in the store room (168). Odysseus takes every possible outcome and does his best to combat that bad outcome from occuring. When this battle takes place, you can see that the planning pays off. Odysseus takes time to prep, leading his people to victory with those advantages. If he just ran into the fight with his comrades and no advantages, his leadership would look poor do to the vast majority of people against them. He could have lost many more men do to a lack of carelessness. These examples show a clear pattern of Odysseus showing exceptional leadership skills. Leadership, in terms of today, is looked upon as a great trait for that of hero. Some may argue that he isn’t a good leader do to the fact that he loses many men. In some of these situations, he can’t prevent losing some men, but instead makes sure that he can save as many, if not all, of his men from danger. This shows Odysseus to be a great leader and a hero for our times.

Odysseus has many points in the epic poem when he could have ran straight into conflict or could have been reckless, but he takes that and does just the opposite. Odysseus’ great use of self control in these situations help him to being a great hero for our times. One example of this heroic trait is shown when Odysseus takes his time to strike against Polyphemus. Odysseus knows when Polyphemus eats two of his men that he’s be trapped, but he takes time to think of a plan that would help him and his crew escape with as little casualty as possible: [Odysseus] racked [his] brain for a plan that would let us escape alive from the clutches of that brute (99). If Odysseus were to simply attack Polyphemus without self-control to think of a flawless plan: he would have lost many lives.

This is bad in itself, but they also wouldn’t have been able to move the boulder. This could lead to starvation and more death. Odysseus’ self-control in this situation keeps him from being reckless which would not make him a hero for our times. Secondly, Odysseus appears as the stranger for a good amount of the epic poem. This is to make sure that he is concealed from the suitors and even the people that he knows. This gives him the time he truly needs to plan against the suitors. Odysseus then comes out of the stranger to Telemachus, who will help him with his plan. Odysseus says, No questions yet [Telemachus]. I must make a plan to slay the vermin who infest my palace [. . .] (167).

This quote truly shows that he wants to make a perfect plan, and this is shown because he will not even take questions from his son that he’s been away from for so many years. He’s so set on making a perfect plan that he completely ignores his son’s possible questions. He wants to make sure the suitors pay as soon as possible with a perfect plan and no room for failure. After the meeting with Telemachus, Odysseus goes back into the form of the stranger. This shows that Odysseus is truly using self-control and, like he said, make a plan to slay the [suitors] who infest my palace. Odysseus even goes into his home as the stranger and sees what the suitors do to others and his very own wife. Even when, he still keeps to his character. This truly shows that Odysseus is wanting the advantages and using self-control, and making him look even more like a hero for our times. Lastly, during the fight against the suitors, Odysseus comes across two innocent men that were within his home during the time he was away. One of the men is the bard, Phemius, and another man named Medon the herald.

Both of these men do nothing to throw down the name of Odysseus. Neither of them take advantage of his wife or the vast amount of food offered. Odysseus could have killed them along with the rest of the suitors and not hear their pleas, but he did hear their pleas: King Odysseus, I [Phemius] throw myself on you mercy. I am a minstrel, gifted by the gods with song. I never wanted to come here but was forced by the suitors (226). Telemachus also stands by their pleas saying, Don’t kill him! [Phemius] speaks truly (226). This shows exceptional self-control in Odysseus based mainly on the fact that he could ignore them and just kill them. Instead though, he takes time to hear them out and spare them due to keeping honor to Odysseus’s name. With all of these pieces of evidence along with many other examples of his exceptional self-control, I can conclude that Odysseus having this trait helps him look like a hero. This is also the case for our times, self control in the modern day is much valued in a hero, and since Odysseus has this and shows it often he looks like a hero for our times.

Odysseus being a hero in our times is quite a hard thing to distinguish on both sides as what he is more of, but his great self control and his great leadership truly shine a light on him being a great hero and role model for our times in the United States. Both of these qualities are looked for in people of our times. A hero is a person of exceptional noble qualities, courage and achievements. Odysseus has many noble qualities, and two being his self-control and leadership. Odysseus also is mainly recognised for contributing in the victory of the Trojan War and his story. He goes through many hardships with the gods and pays vengeance to the people that take advantage of his wife and his home. He also shows courage in the many things he does to make it back to his home and fight when he gets there. Odysseus shows all the traits of being a great hero in modern times, and he truly is one.

The Greatest Military Leader Of All Time

Alexander the Great is known as one of the greatest military leaders of all time. He conquered numerous territories some of which were the neighboring states of Greece, the Persian empire, and the Egyptians. He was an enthusiast of Homeric models and in several ways developed his style of kingship by looking to those models.

Many people who also admired Homer’s poetry did not like Alexander as they believed he misunderstood Homer and the idea of “Homeric kingship”. Nevertheless, Alexander conveyed that he understood the lessons in Homer’s poems well through his unwavering decisions and sensible actions during his reign.

An important lesson taught by The Odyssey was that evil-doers will inevitably face the consequences for their choices. For example, the Cyclops Polyphemus devoured two of Odysseus’ men and trapped the others in his cave. Odysseus hatched a brilliant plan to intoxicate the cyclops with wine, then stab its eye using a sharpened olive tree while it was passed out. His plan succeeded; the blind Cyclops removed the boulder blocking the exit of the cave to call for help which allowed Odysseus and his men to escape. The Cyclops faced the repercussions for not respecting the ancient Greek tradition of providing hospitality to guests who were far from home. Alexander did some gruesome things during his reign. However, he seldom inflicted damage upon anyone without a logical reason and if he did, he would genuinely regret it. For instance, when Alexander came into contact with the sacred sanctuary of Nysa, the Indians explained it was constructed from their own interpretation of Greek religion.

The sanctuary, which was the only place where ivy grew in India, was a dedication to the god Dionysus, who the Indians believed was their founder. After learning this, Alexander did not destroy the sanctuary. Instead, he garrisoned his troops in the territory, celebrated the sanctuary with festivities, and formed a close friendship with the Indians. He believes in the importance of having the gods on his side to ensure victory in his conquests. Destroying the sanctuary of Nysa would be an evil act which would undoubtedly upset the gods. In short, Alexander preferred to avoid divine punishment. Moreover, his celebration of the sanctuary of Nysa with the Indians exemplifies his respect for the representation of Greek religion in foreign cultures. The formation of friendships with the Indians demonstrates Alexander’s understanding of his limits. To elaborate, since Alexander already has countless enemies, he recognized that it was unnecessary to make even more when there was no apparent reason. This indicates that Alexander clearly understood the Homeric lesson of how evil-doers are unable to escape their consequences.

In Homer’s Iliad, Agamemnon was portrayed as the cruel and selfish king of Mycenae who kept most the riches from war to himself despite not having shed a drop of blood. Homer utilized Agamemnon to illustrate the lesson that a king who obsessed over wealth and power but has no respect for his soldiers, is incompetent for such authority. As the Indians took refuge from the Macedonians in the citadel, Alexander commanded his troops to continue their pursuit. Witnessing the sluggishness of the Macedonians bringing up the ladder, Alexander impatiently grabbed the ladder from a soldier and climbed up himself. Concerned about their king’s safety, multiple foot guards tried to climb the ladder at once which caused it to break, leaving no other way to get to Alexander. Considering his unfavorable positioning which exposed him to all surrounding towers, Alexander decided to jump into the citadel and he ultimately killed them all. Eventually, as more Indians came, his chest was pierced by an arrow which led him to lose consciousness. Fortunately, his soldiers were able to support him (Arrian, Anabasis 6.9.1-6). This represents Alexander’s passion to lead his soldiers into battle despite being a king. He did not hesitate to be the first person to climb up the ladder or jump into the citadel.

If Alexander was consumed by greed for wealth, he would not endanger his life on the front line of battles. This also highlights the high level of respect Alexander has for his soldiers. As a king, he wants his men to be displaying their utmost endeavor. So by endangering himself, he exposed their maximum efforts to protect their king. Not only does this make his soldiers stronger, more confident, and increase their survivability, but it also points out the care Alexander has for them. Instead, his choice was a life of struggle, of wars and of unrelenting ambition (Plutarch, The Age of Alexander 284.5-6). Alexander found the idea of things being handed to him from his father, King Philip II, to be distasteful. He preferred to achieve fame through his own actions. This testifies for Alexander’s proficiency to be king. Therefore, he understands that a king must not be greedy and must respect his soldiers similar to how they admire him.

Conclusively, Alexander the Great deeply understood the lessons outlined by Homeric poems such as the Iliad and Odyssey. Although numerous individuals who loved Homer and his poems disliked Alexander, as they believed he misinterpreted Homer and the idea of “Homeric kingship”, his decisions and actions suggest otherwise. Hence, Alexander the Great was a competent king who respected his soldiers, as well as other foreign cultures, and knew he could not escape facing dire consequences if he intentionally committed an evil deed.

The metamorphosis of China from exotic to global contender

China’s image as a whole has transitioned from a place of exoticism to being a global contender. From cinema to even literature China’s image was slowly molded into an exotic object built on oriental ideals. It was looked upon with wonder and desire for something different, and not so western.

However, China has managed to adjust its image. To understand these images, we must understand the concept of Orientalism, beginning with the word Orient itself. The “Orient” often referred to the East. Orientalism constructs cultural, social, and visual ideologies and stereotypes that are often connected to the political ideologies of governments and institutions. The influence of these ideologies has impacted the formation of knowledge and the process of knowledge production. Often oriental ideals depict an exotic and therefore racialized and often sexualized culture from a distant land. As a result, they simultaneously claim to be an authentic glimpse of a location and its inhabitants.

Edward Said, a professor of literature at Columbia University, and a founder of the academic field of postcolonial studies, contemplated this idea orientalism. He begins his study of orientalism with first defining the terms of which orientalism is established. Edward Said states,” orientalism is a western-style for dominating, restructuring, and having authority over the Orient.” he goes on to argue that the Orient has helped to define Europe or the West as it is contrasting image, idea, personality and experience. However, I believe that although the West used Oriental ideals to define for themselves from the East. The Orient used oriental ideals to also define themselves, develop a sense of nationalism and establish a global image.

To fully understand the impact of Orientalism on the Orient, the foundation of Orientalism must be analyzed. Exotic is formally defined as: strikingly, excitingly, or mysteriously different or unusual. Likewise, exoticism is the quality or state of being exotic. The divide between the West and Orient (or the east) can be first dated back to as late as 8th century BC in the Odyssey by Homer. Odysseus the protagonist of the story travels along the ocean and in book nine sails through murky water and lands upon this island of Cyclops. The Cyclops were depicted as being both rough and uncivilized race of one- eyed giants. The Greeks are also argued to be responsible for the western conception of India. In the late fourth century the Marvels of the East: a Study in the History of Monsters was published. Marvels of the East kindled an exotic image of India as whole. India was depicted as a place of spices, monsters with long ears, and inhuman creatures. From about the twelfth century onwards the marvels penetrated in to the field of religious art. The fabulous races were the products of God’s will. Therefore, part of the mission of the apostles to bring them the Gospels. Although, both the Marvel’s of the East and The Odyssey’s depictions of monsters can be proven to be fictional. The remnants of these Oriental ideologies still haunt the divide between both the East and West.

In 1965 the film The face of Fu Manchu was directed by Don Sharp was released. In the film Nayland Smith and Dr. Petrie hunt down the oriental crime lord Fu Manchu, who plans to destroy society with a toxic gas. This diabolical crime Lord Full Manchu, as a whole is molded and created to portray oriental ideals. In any movie the visuals are the most important aspect. When Full Manchu first appears he is made to visually portray a caricature of a Chinaman. Fu Manchu is dressed in traditional or oriental clothing. Portraying that he is obviously oriental, and different from the Western characters. Moreover, his clothing also portrays an inability to move pass past cultural ideals and adapt to the rest of society. Fu Manchu also has a very distinct beard which like his clothing is a product of the oriental caricature. Considering the less visual aspect of the film, Fu Manchu’s motive for wanting to destroy humanity with a gas is not explained in the film clearly. As a result, he is molded into an irrational and unstable person who is just simply cruel for fun. Fu Manchu as a character also had very few lines within the film. His muteness conveys not just covertness and distrust, but also a more submissive East. As a result, a power dynamic is established in the film.
One ought never to assume that the structure of Orientalism is nothing more than a structure of lies or of myths which, were the truth about them to be told, would simply blow away. I myself believe that Orientalism is more particularly valuable a sign of European-Atlantic power over the Orient than it is as a verification discourse about the Orient (which is what, in its academic or scholarly form, it claims to be(Edward Said 7).

The Oriental ideals portrayed in the film establishes a hierarchy of power, between the West and the Orient. The possession of greater power generally invests the knowledges of the more powerful with a greater authority than those of the powerless, and this authority facilitates the creation of universalized images of both the powerful and the powerless. Through Oriental ideals the West reinforced its superiority and dominance. Moreover, the West was able to invoke fear through the idea that the Chinaman was the most dangerous competition to the white man. However what Edward Said failed to address is the response from the East. For the concept of Orientalism is a two- way street, with opinion and perspectives flowing back and forth between the observer and the observed. I believe that Orientalism provoked China to not only discover, but also define who they were. China responded to orientalist ideals by diverging from the evil and diabolical image they are depicted to be. By defying the image of the West China began to paint their image from exotic, to being a global contender on a canvas built on Western oriental ideals. Although China began to change and establish their identity in spite of the Western ideal they still lacked power. As a result, the image of the dangerous China man continued to be reflected in literature and media.


  • 1 From Orientalism to Nationalism
  • 2 Chinese Globalization

From Orientalism to Nationalism

Two images of China are recognizable to people to both the USA and Britain. These images focus on intelligence or martial arts. But what sells and makes country a commodity like China to the West. The simple answer would be the exotic factor, built on Orientalist ideologies. Although the ideologies are exaggerated and distorted. China utilized Oriental ideals to create a strong sense of Nationalism. Nationalism is a political, social, and economic ideology and movement characterized by the promotion of the interests of a particular nation with the aim of gaining and maintaining the nation’s sovereignty over its homeland.
As the influence of a dominant country is seen to recede in a given region at least one of the other regional states, previously restrained by the erstwhile hegemon , attempts to expand its power(A) power vacuum means t/at natural forces draw in a new hegemon to replace the old one. The new dominant power may not yet be as strong as the former hegemon in its heyday, only stronger than any other country in the region(Zheng 5).

After the cold war, cause the downfall of the former Soviet Union the Chinese image transformed from being very submissive to a sort of dominant figurehead. This was the first time in its history that China encountered the opportunity to become a powerhouse. As a result, China felt the need to rise to the occasion and take on this dominant figure. China reconstructed their culture or identity to cope with changing domestic and international environment. The west was the standard that China aimed for. Portraying the message that only by westernization could China develop a strong nation – state making the countries equals. Because China was portrayed as weak, its leaders looked to the West to change its on worldview, while also preserving culture and tradition. The west still spread oriental ideals of the East increasing nationalism in the Republic of China. Nationalism in China became a means for survival from foreign aggression. According to Sun Yat – sen the founder of China, the meaning of Chinese nationalism is multifold. He states, First nationalism was the equivalent to the doctrine of the State as China had developed as a single State out of a single race ever since the Qin and Han dynasties. Second, nationalism was the key to the development and survival of the China nation, and third, nationalism called for the equality of all races and was the way to restore freedom and equality to China(17). This multifold nationalism was overall a direct response to the Oriental ideals imposed upon China. The Chinese government sensibly appealed Oriental ideal to counter the Chinese threat abroad. However, like orientalism nationalism is a double -edged sword. While Orientalism imposes power it simultaneously gives rise to other powers in this case China. Overall, Chinese political leaders’ main goal was not to overthrow the existing system, but rather receive recognition of Chinese power and its place in the world by other major world powers.

In a strive to defy oriental ideals China managed to paint a new image for itself leading to more communication, and a higher rank in the eyes of the world. Reversing its image in spite of Edward Said’s theory of power. China used Oriental ideals to benefit itself. Moreover, it created more unity within the country, because the citizens were fighting a common enemy the West diabolical image of them.

Chinese Globalization

Globalization is the process by which businesses or other organizations develop international influence or start operating on an international scale. Globalization allows for comparative advantage. This allows countries that are good at producing certain goods, are better off exporting to countries that are less efficient at producing that good. Orientalist ideals of the East overall raised the living standards in most places of the East through tourism. However, if we simplify Edward Said’s argument about Orientalism functioning solely on power, then globalization coincides with this based on the power of economics. However, the traditional power structures formed by the East and West through Orientalism in the twenty first century are no longer the sole form of dominance anymore. Due to globalization, cultural power of the west is no longer hegemonic. Meaning, that the West is not solely the ruling or dominant power in both a political and social context. Orientalism is not as effective anymore due China’s increasing economic and political power since both colonial and post-colonial era of exotic lands.

Over the past few years China has experienced an average of nearly ten percent growth rates for almost four decades. It is the first developing nation to become a great power (NYTimes). Because power is needed for Orientalism to work The west is no longer able to impose itself upon China. Therefore, globalization has become the new Orientalism. In the twenty-first century the East and the West don’t have to compete for world image, but rather for the power of the purse. Whoever controls the money has the power. It is no longer about demeaning a race of people by depicting them as barbaric monsters.

During the age of colonialism and discovery the Oriental world was basically a distant place that many had not traveled. It was a land of fictional monsters and barbaric humans. In Marvels of the East: A study in the history of Monsters, India was portrayed to contain, Although during the 14th century men like Nicolas Oresme and Henry of Hesse mark the beginning of a strong opposition against occult sciences and credulity in monsters, the belief in the marvels only died very slowly. In fact, even the enlightenment brought about during the 15th century by the geographical expansion and the rediscovery of Ptolemy’s geography did not lead to a noticeable break in the tradition (Marvel’s of the East 84). Although the traditions did not make a transformation in the fifteenth and fourteenth century it has in the twenty-first century.

This change is due to the rise of globalization and the demolition of Orientalism. Globalization, unlike Orientalism sole driving force is communication and economic power, which has allowed China to transform from exotic to a global contender. Making the competition between the East and the West more tangible than fictional monsters. As China in the twenty- first century increases its power the exotic factor has become more diluted and China has created its own image. Views of domestic issues show that most Chinese are optimistic about their country’s power and influence. According to Pew, sixty-seven percent of the Chinese public in 2015 believed that China would eventually surpass the United States as the world’s leading superpower. The same poll showed that only sixteen percent believed that China would never replace the United States as a superpower. Chinese people are similarly optimistic regarding the nature of China’s influence abroad, ninety-seven percent believed that China had a positive impact in the region (YunHan Chu). As surveyed China not only counteracts Oriental ism through the gains of globalization, it also uses globalization to spread a positive image of themselves. As a result, the modern-day image of and Asian in Western media majority of the time is of a doctor, lawyer, martial art or someone very intelligent. Unlike the earlier image portrayed in Fu Manchu.

Overall the metamorphosis of China from exotic to a global competitor is due to three main factors. The first, defining themselves despite the diabolical image portrayed by Western oriental ideologies. However, China at the time lacked power. Therefore, the demeaning image of a dangerous Chinaman continued to spread. The second factor being nationalism. China was able to create a strong sense of nationalism among its citizens. This allowed China to cope with the changing domestic and international environment. The third, being globalization. With globalization China increased its power. While simultaneously increasing its influence on the world. I believe that in the future the West could become less influential. Therefore, becoming subject to Orientalist ideals from the East. Therefore, we must ask how our current international relations and influence standing are. Moreover, the West should reflect on how the West would cope under shifting power dynamics. One option the West could cope with/ shifting power dynamic would be to simply accept the power shift. However, with the West having a large influence this is the most ideal, but least realistic. I believe that China’s increased power countries in the West could start to feel threatened. Therefore, sending the message to China that the West doesn’t want China to develop and become an equal contender, nor truly recognize China’s power. However, with China’s increasing economic growth, China has become more confident In dealing with other countries. Resulting in China gaining a high level of respect from other countries within the international network of communication.

The Odyssey And Inferno

After perusing the sagas The Odyssey by Homer and The Divine ComedyInferno by Dante Alighieri, it is obvious how extraordinary these two stories are. In The Odyssey, Odysseus is battling to achieve his home, which he didn’t see for a long time. The subject for his story is one man’s craving to go home.

In Inferno, Dante the character is battling among great and abhorrence, which is the topic of the story. The character investigates inside and out the Christian damnation and paradise, including the transitional Purgatory. It is through his experience that he throws his faithfulness to God and great. Numerous contrasts between these two stories are obvious when looking at epic qualities, epic traditions, and furthermore contrasting the diverse religious foundations of the periods in which these accounts were composed.

Epic qualities incorporate a saint, superhuman bravery, a tremendous setting, and otherworldly powers. In Homer’s The Odyssey, the principle character Odysseus is a war saint voyaging home. He faces mind boggling difficulties amid his arrival which incorporate, yet are not restricted to, being thrown on an island, engaging Poseidon and the oceans, battling turncoat suitors, and recovering his home. The setting for his story includes his voyage from the island and over the oceans until the point that he achieves his home. Odysseus likewise voyages to the black market to visit the apparitions, or shades, for direction.

All through Odysseus’ adventure, he is supported and tested by the extraordinary forces of various divine beings. In Dante’s Inferno, the legend of the story is Dante. Dante, the character, is a man who was ousted from his home in light of his political convictions and battles with the decision among great and shrewdness. His valor comes as mankind; he faces the test that all people battle with. His fearlessness is tried by his movements through the nine rings of hellfire. Dante expresses, “therefore look carefully; you’ll see such things/as would deprive my speech of all belief” (1873). In contrast to Odysseus, Dante’s mettle does exclude incredible physical accomplishments. Dante displays bravery in testing his own internal quality. The huge setting incorporates damnation in Inferno, as well as Purgatory and paradise are additionally visited in The Divine Comedy. With respect to otherworldly powers, Dante the character meets numerous shades and is lead through hellfire by the perished artist Virgil.

When pursuing an epic, there are numerous traditions that the authors would utilize. In Dante’s Inferno, these traditions are not as apparent as in Homer’s The Odyssey. For instance, one epic tradition is a long formal discourse by the fundamental character. In Homer’s The Odyssey, Odysseus utilized weapons as well as words when battling the suitors that attacked his home in his nonattendance. You yellow dogs, you thought I’d never make it home from the land of Troy. You took my house to plunder, twisted my maids to serve your beds. You dared bid for my wife while I was still alive (495). In Dante’s Inferno, Dante the character does not give any paramount talks, in any event none as fabulous as those composed by Homer.

One essential contrast among Inferno and The Odyssey is the religious contrasts of the time. In old Greece, when Homer composed his epic, the religious conviction was polytheism. There existed distinctive divine beings for various parts of nature, human or common. These incorporate a divine force of war, a lord of affection, a lord of the oceans, etc. In Odysseus’ voyage, the goddess Athena helps him. Likewise, the god Poseidon challenges Odysseus as the aftereffect of a past resentment. Homer composed of Poseidon, “Only the god who laps the land in water, /Poseidon, bears the fighter an old grudge/since he poked out the eye of Polyphemos” (227). These divine beings impact the lives of the general population on earth. At the point when Dante composed Inferno, the world was moving toward a Christian larger part, much like it is today. Dante recognizes that the polytheistic convictions of the past were, in his time, thought to be a transgression against God. Dante’s story best mirrors this by taking note of critical past figures, for example, the artist Virgil or the saint Odysseus, as being in damnation for their non-Christian ways.

Despite the fact that there are numerous contrasts between the two legends, Dante’s Inferno and Homer’s The Odyssey contain some essential similitudes. One, the two men each long for a lady whom they cherished previously. The motivation behind Odysseus’ adventure was to rejoin his significant other Penelope. For Dante, he ached for his affection Beatrice whom he reunites with not in Inferno but rather later in The Divine Comedy. A second imperative similitude is that the two men look for direction from the individuals who lived before them. Odysseus goes to the black market where he approaches his mom for news of his significant other: “Still with her child indeed she is, poor heart, /still in your palace hall. Forlorn her nights/and days go by, her life used up in weeping” (351). In Inferno, Dante the character is lead by the artist Virgil, a man whose work Dante the essayist respected. While in heck, Dante not just tries to gain from the heathens there, however he likewise gains from Virgil. Virgil shows Dante the character about the heathens and the revival. Dante expressed, “remember now your science, /which says that when a thing has more perfection, /so much greater is its pain or pleasure” (1854).

Although altogether different in nature, the two sagas can be charming for a cutting edge gathering of people. The Odyssey is a tale about battling against divine beings and oozing valor in a legend’s activities. The story is composed with unimaginable words that charm groups of onlookers, even today. Inferno was composed with extraordinary knowledge to the human battle among great and abhorrence. That battle goes on even in the present current society.

Dante’s interpretation of Hell

Granted, throughout the epic, it is evident that Dante has his own interpretation of justice and who should pay it. It is also evident that Dante doesn’t like the Greeks, for several Greek heroes appear in the different circles of hell even though it seems like they’re in hell for the sole reason that Dante didn’t like them. In the start of canto twenty six, The Evil Counselors, in the Eighth Circle of Hell, Dante realizes the Greek hero, Odysseus, or Ulysses, and Diomede are in the form of fires.

Both are said to be there because they helped on the attack in the Trojan War, and Ulysses created the idea of the horse. However, Ulysses, from The Odyssey, is a hero; in fact, he doesn’t deserve to be placed there in the Eighth Circle of Hell.

In like manner, its pequliar to read the Ulysses Dante has created, for he is portrayed very differently from the Ulysses in The Odyssey. Both are characterized and made out to be two completely different characters. Ulysses, in The Odyssey does everything in his power to be with his family, yet not only that but Ulysses is in despair because of the separation he endures from being away from his family for several years. Additionally, he leaves Ogygia when he has the chance to and undertakes a dangerous journey home; overall, he is a family-man. On the other hand, in Dante’s Inferno, Ulysses died because he left home to embark on a journey in order to learn and experience different customs. Dante characterized him so differently, yet it wouldn’t be in Ulysses’ character to leave his family behind. Dante could have gotten away with placing Ulysses in hell despite the fact that he was courageous and a hero but to write him in a way that doesn’t fit his true nature, to misrepresent his personality shows his distaste for Greeks.

Furthermore, in Canto 30, The Falsifiers, Dante’s interpretation of Hell, and how its justice should work, becomes strongly relevant as Virgil and Dante near the center where Satan resides. From the start, its evident that Dante created a system in which he organized an order of how he interprets the magnitude of the sin. There he places evil impersonators, counterfeiters, and false witnesses in the last patch of circle eight which is only a circle away from Satan himself, yet according to Dante’s placement, a false witness is far worse than a murderer who is placed in the Sixth Circle of Hell. Bearing false witness is the same as lying, and though lying is still wrong, it does not compare to the act of murder.

Moreover, Allen Mandelbaum, author of Lectura Dantis: Inferno: A Canto-by-Canto Commentary, explains that Dante wrote Hell like the human body. First, Dante and Virgil descended into Limbo which is the equivalence to the head since it represents the memory humanity has of the ancient world. Then they reach the City of Dis where there is a river of blood, the heart, and following that is the Seventh Circle of Hell, violence, which relates to the chest where he united both the intellectual and animal natures. Additionally, whenever a new part of Hell opens up, and Dante needs to be transported into the next circle, that part refers to a division of the human body. The walls of the City of Dis means to be the ribcage while Cocytus is the large intestine. Throughout the Inferno, Dante relates sin and its consequences with malfunction within the body and disease. The Eighth Circle of Hell corresponds to the belly where there is a parallel between food digestion and the mind, for truth is the food of the soul, fraud its poison; their concentric circles have an obvious relation to the labyrinth of the intestines (Mandelbaum, 398).

A tragic hero Odysseus

Greek mythology was used as a means to explain the environment in which humankind lived, the natural phenomena they witnessed and the passing of time through the days, months, and seasons.(Cartwright ). The myths were tied with Greek religion and the Greek worlds. It explained the lives and origin stories of many different gods.

For example, it talked about where humans had come from and where humans go when the pass away. Lastly, some greek writings tell stories of tragic heroes. Tragic heros are characters with heroic personalities, but also make mistakes that lead them into suffering and defeat. Odysseus is a tragic hero and his story was written by Homer.

Odysseus was a greek hero who fought in the Trojan War. According to Trenton Mabey, his roman name is Ulysses. He was known for his cunning intellect because he made a plan that destroyed the city of Troy which ended the war. His real story began with The Odyssey. The Odyssey was about Odysseus traveling the seas for about ten years trying to return home to his family. Before the war, he left his wife Penelope to take over and his newborn son Telemachus. In the Trojan War, there was a prophecy that said Odysseus had to stay away from home for a long time if he joined the Greek army and attacked Troy. The war lasted for about 10 years and in the war was a giant wooden horse called the Trojan Horse. The horse was a peace offering and inside the horse, Greek warriors were hiding.

While leaving a storm caused by the gods hit the army and Odysseus and his crew were blown off course. This was the beginning of his troubles of getting back home. First place they arrived to was the city of Cicones. They attacked and sacked the city, which angered the god Zeus. ( Mabey). While angry, Zeus blew Odysseus and his men into a realm of mythical creatures and the dead. Zeus blew them to the Land of the Lotus-Eaters. In this place people who created food and drink from flowers, but with a drug effect. (Mabey). In result, his men forgot that their goal was to return home, so they wanted to stay. Odysseus did not approve of that so he made then return to the ships.

Next was the island of the Cyclops. There, they met Polyphemus the Cyclops. Cyclops have one eye and they are giants. Odysseus and his men went to explore the area until they found a cave to rest in. Polyphemus returned to the cave with his flock of sheep, blocked the entrance and ate two of Odysseus’s men. Odysseus told Polyphemus that his name was Noman and after that, Polyphemus fell into a drunken stupor. The men stabbed the cyclops in the eye so the cyclops yelled for his brothers. Odysseus and the rest of his man managed to escape but they angered Poseidon (a sea god).

After they escaped from the island of the cyclops, they went to visit the King of the Winds. The king name was Aeolus and he gave Odysseus a big bag of wind to get them to Ithaca. His men thought it was treasure he was hiding for himself so they opened the bag releasing the wind. The wind blew them to Laestrygonians which was full of giants and cannibals. They killed most of his crew and destroyed most of his ships. Soon after that, Odysseus landed on Circe’s island. When some of his crew members stumbled across her palace she invited them in for drugged food and drink, but she turned them into animals. One of the members remained outside and went to tell Odysseus so the remainder of his men would not eat them.

On his journey to save them, he came across a god named Hermes. Hermes gave him a herb to serve as a cure for the curse. Circe agreed to change his men back to humans if he stayed with her for about a year. Circe did not want him to leave but she helped him get help from the counsel of Tiresias in the underworld on how to get home. He gave Odysseus the route to Ithaca but before that he had to sacrifice a sheep. After he left the Underworld, he went to the Sirens. The Sirens were mythical bird-like creatures whose beautiful voices lured men to their deaths. ( Mabey). In order to protect them from that, they had to put wax over their ears to block the noise.

Odysseus Cyclops Essay

Why not take these cheeses, get them stowed, come back, throw open all the pens, and make a run for it?… How sound that was (Lines 166-171) This quote implies that Odysseus even knew that the best idea would be to leave quietly and discreetly. He already had everything he needed, and his greedy curiosity would prove to be the downfall of several of his men. The final reason Odysseus was in the wrong for choosing to remain in that forsaken cave, was the fact that he is supposed to be a leader.

Leaders are people who make hard decisions and sacrifice things for the safety of his men, and the accomplishment of his goals. Odysseus did neither of those things on the island. As he states I refused. I wished to see the caveman, what he had to offer- no pretty sight, it turned out, for my friends. As stated earlier, Odysseus knew with 100% certainty that he had everything he could possibly need from this island, and had acquired it pretty easily. There was no need to risk everything, especially at the cost of men and mission.

One could argue that yes, it is by custom that all hosts treat their guests with respect and kindness, often accompanied by a gift. Odysseus could have reasonably believed that the Cyclops would have felt obligated to help them. He even said, here we stand, beholden for your help, or any gifts you give as a custom is to honor strangers (Line 211-213) His reasoning here is likely that Polyphemus could help him even further. However, this is no reason at all to justify staying in the cave. As stated earlier, Odysseus is a leader of men. Leaders, especially in times of war and struggle, are rational, smart people that are able to judge risks and decide what would be the best for their men. It doesn’t take a genius to make a decision to leave that cave. The crew had everything they needed, had taken little time, and had lost nothing. Why risk everything for a gift that may not even exist? The answer; you don’t. Odysseus was certainly in the wrong for his actions on the island, especially the one to stay in the cave. At this point in The Odyssey, it is safe to say that his character needs to grow if he is to make it home to Ithaca.