Homer: The Odyssey

Homer: The Odyssey

Paperback Landmarks of World Literature (Paperback)

By (author) Jasper Griffin

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  • Publisher: CAMBRIDGE UNIVERSITY PRESS
  • Format: Paperback | 112 pages
  • Dimensions: 126mm x 194mm x 6mm | 100g
  • Publication date: 10 November 2003
  • Publication City/Country: Cambridge
  • ISBN 10: 0521539781
  • ISBN 13: 9780521539784
  • Edition: 2, Revised
  • Edition statement: 2nd Revised edition
  • Illustrations note: black & white illustrations
  • Sales rank: 304,159

Product description

This handy guide to The Odyssey will introduce students to a text, which has been fundamental to literature for nearly 3000 years. Readers will be introduced to the world in that the Odyssey was produced, to the text itself and to its origins in oral poetry. This volume gives a summary of the poem and examines its structure. The unity, values and techniques of the poem are clearly outlined, as are the reasons for its longstanding appeal. This guide delves into the diverse world of the story; that of monsters, gods, and enchantresses which interacts with the very different world of the home, marriage and the family. Students will be introduced to the essential themes of loyalty and betrayal, and guided through the narrative of Odysseus' adventures, which also illustrate the workings of the world and the justice of heaven. Readers will also find a very helpful guide to further reading.

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Review quote

'... students and teachers alike will still find Griffin's Guide a lively and erudite vade mecum. Griffin's aim is to 'put the Odyssey into its historical setting, and to bring out its individual character', both of which he achieves with an admirably accessible level of high scholarship ... this reprint of an outstanding little book is a must-have.' The Journal of Classics Teaching

Table of contents

Preface; Part I. The Making of the Odyssey: 1. The background of the Odyssey; 2. The date of the Odyssey; 3. Bards and oral poetry; 4. The language of the Odyssey and the 'formulaic system'; 5. Is the Odyssey an oral poem?; 6. Alternative Odysseys?; 7. How the poem comes down to us; Part II. The Poem: 8. Summary; 9. Translating Homer; 10. Shape and unity; 11. The epic style: grandeur and realism; 12. The epic: technique and variety; 13. The Odyssey and the Iliad; 14. Myth and folklore; 15. Some problems; 16. Men and gods; 17. Men and women; 18. Society and geography; 19. The values of the Odyssey; Part III. The Odyssey and After: 20. The after-life of the Odyssey; Guide to further reading.