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Heroic Paradigms from Iliad to Aeneid - Essay Example

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Heroic Paradigms from Iliad to Aeneid

The Aeneid does not explicitly deal with Roman politics in fact it is a story about a mythological figure Aeneas who lead Trojans to Italy after the Greeks destroy their homeland. Unlike Homer’s Aeneas who is portrayed as a warrior who boasts about his prowess on the battlefield and then proceeds to lose in every one of them since he was a bad warrior Vergil projects him as a tragic figure who is in search of a rational explication about the actions of God who destroy human beings and make them suffer, The same Gods who love and protect him. Some of the major heroic paradigms that are explored in “The Iliad” include the ideals of heroism: bravery, courage, super-strength, intelligence and nobility. The Homeric Hero is a man of action who is never incapacitated because he survives on his instinct. Unhindered by doubts he soars above humanity and performs action that ensures his ever lasting fame and glory. Achilles fits this description of Homeric Hero although it is observed that his character develops gradually through out the text. The readers realize that Achilles of Iliad 22 is a man with a higher mission, who is ready to stake everything, including his own life in order to fulfill his mission. Hence he acts totally differently from the man of Iliad 1 who acts as a petulant child with a short temper and has the tendency of making irrational decisions. Therefore it can be inferred that the glory associated with Homeric Hero lives up to the definition of a hero of the Greek times. So it is perceived that the audience of the time believed that a hero should be an individual above all other human beings with special qualities of bravery, strength and intelligence. On contrary Aeneas is introduced in the poem as, “And suddenly Aeneas felt his limbs go numb with cold …I envy your fate…Why didn't you kill me on the plains of Troy When you had the chance and free my soul with your strong hand?” (Vergil 3). In the very beginning the protagonist has surrendered his will to fate and desires death. This explication is in complete contrast to the heroic paradigms set by the Greeks. Hence from this it can be inferred that Vergil’s Aeneid enlightens the readers about the cultural trend during the Vergil’s time had shifted from hero worship to a character more closely related to a common man who suffers pain and is not above the rest of mankind. Western Thought According to Plato and Aristotle the best way of learning is through communicating with others or collectivization. Socrates ‘Dialectic Method’ is a common technique that is employed in most of the classes. According to which he sat in the market place, started of a conversation on a certain topic and then picked up their flaws out of the ensuing argument and then brought each conversation to a proper ending or conclusion. A similar style of discussion and study is also implemented in this course of philosophy. This method helps the students to not only think about and share their personal ideas but also it enlightens them about the thoughts and feelings of their fellow students as well hence providing them with an opportunity to learn from the experiences or the point of views of other individuals. The Early Western thought processes of each writer vastly differ from one another. For example although Homer and Vergil in their respective epic poems deal with same mythological figures yet ...Show more
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Writer Customer Philosophy 1o May’2012 Heroic Paradigms from Iliad to Aeneid “The Iliad” is a tale of Greeks who sailed across the sea to besiege the Trojans in their walled fortress in the city of Troy, which is also known as Ilium (hence name “The Iliad”)…
Heroic Paradigms from Iliad to Aeneid
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