Odysseus: The Overrated Leader Essay

923 words - 4 pages

In the epic poem ‘The Odyssey’, by Homer, Odysseus, the narrator and captain of a crew goes through many obstacles as he tries to lead his crew back to their homeland, Ithaca, after ten years of battling the Trojan War. Odysseus was the king of Ithaca and seen as a great leader. Good leaders are those who can lead and direct without misusing their power and also protect their crew. Although Odysseus has the characteristics of a good leader sometimes, I don’t think that he is one as a whole mainly because he can’t control his men, lacks the gain of respect and trust from his crew, and gets carried away with his pride.
One of the first things that happen is when the crew went to the land of ...view middle of the document...

Another time where Odysseus’ crew do not trust or respect him is on Helios’ Island. Odysseus’ crew is warned several times to not eat the cattle which is sacred. This time it is evident that they have completely stopped listening to their leader Odysseus as they cooked a whole cow and ate it. If Odysseus was a good leader and had the respect and trust from his crew, they would’ve believed him about the bag of wind and they would’ve held strong through their temptations on Helios’ island.
Odysseus is known for being very prideful and a seeker for fame which is another quality that makes him a very bad leader. When they get to the Cyclops Island, Odysseus goes in with twelve of his best men. The Cyclops catches them and ties them up, trapping them by rolling a giant boulder in front of the exit of the cave. The Cyclops eats eight of the men, and later on Odysseus unties himself and remaining four men. They then trick the Cyclops to open the boulder and stab him in the eye. Once they get back in the ship, Odysseus thinks that since they are far away enough he should yell back at the Cyclops and brag to him that they got away, instead of mourning the loss of his eight men and being grateful that he got away. If the Cyclops had better aim and the boulder he threw hit his target, the ship, this could’ve resulted in the death of Odysseus himself. Odysseus’ ego then inflating even more, lacking self-discipline and not listening to his...

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