Homeric songs: final exam

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ANSWER "A," "B," OR "C" BELOW (choice of Paris?)

A.

Even though you know how it ends, we still haven't solved the mystery of the Odyssey, have we? We have the dead body (lots of dead bodies, actually). But why did Odysseus die, and when and how? 

Homer leaves lots of clues, but even brilliant Odysseus hasn't solved the case! What about Teiresias' prophecy? Teiresias was a genius, but did he really know Odysseus' fate?

This is a tough one. Good luck on your exam. No, I'm not giving any more hints.

B.

Write a story line for a novel and/or movie that uses as many Homeric themes, ideas and overtones as possible along the lines of either (1) an American cowboy western or (2) a horror story involving return of the dead.

Provide at least a rough sketch of the plot, including the major scenes that you would emphasize, and descriptions of the most important characters. 

Have fun.

C.

What does Homer mean by "hero"? How is the modern word different? How is it the same? What do your answers to these questions suggest to you about modern culture?

 

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Instructor: gutchess@englishare.net 
Copyright  2001

 

READINGS for Powers of Literature
(with Lesson numbers):

1. Genesis 1
Creation Story

1. Genesis 11
Babel Story

2. Odyssey 8
Odysseus' voyage 1

3. Iliad 1-2
Achilles' anger

4. Iliad 9
Mission to Achilles

4. Peleus & Thetis
ancient sources

5. Iliad 15 ff
Death of Patroklos

6. Iliad 20 ff
Burial of Hektor

7. Odyssey 13-18
Return of Odysseus

8. Odyssey 20-24
City of Dreams

9. Life of Alexander
the Homeric king

10. Origins of writing
ancient sources

11. Plato, Euthyphro
Socrates gets busted

12. Plato, Apology
Socrates on trial

13. Plato, Crito
Socrates in jail

14. Plato, Phaedo
Socrates in heaven

15. Luke, Acts
Paul does Christ

16. Saint Francis
gospel without text

17. Chretien, The Knight of the Cart
Sire Lance's genes

18. Virgil, Aeneid
Aeneas & Dido