The Greek Hero Defined Essay

985 words - 4 pages

Humans have the innate need to feel as if something greater than their species exists in the world, thus they created a need for heroes. Heroes of the modern age tend to be reserved, isolated people that have suffered some sort of tragedy in their pasts. While blinded by those tragedies, modern heroes, such as Batman, overcome those emotional hurdles, and rise victorious in an otherworldly, godly nature. While modern heroes tend to be fictional and give people hope of an all-powerful protector, Greek heroes were more approachable and realistic as they relied heavily on the gods. By using the archetypal hero cycle, the Greek hero is defined as a mortal of royal descent who embraces the nature ...view middle of the document...

According to Campbell, this call to action is when the hero “is told to go on a quest by a god or ‘force’” (Handout). This introduction of the hero to his quest is the first phase of a multistep process into becoming worthy of a greater power, and to bring himself fame. This call represents a Greek hero’s need to satisfy the gods and to prove that he is worthy of his godly inheritance. Perseus’ call to action was when the island king ordered him to kill the gorgon Medusa. As stated by D’Aulaire and D’Aulaire in their book D’Aulaire’s Book Of Greek Myths, “No man who had ever set out to kill Medusa had come back” (116). Spoken by the evil king, these words initiated Perseus’ journey to kill the gorgon and earned him the Gods’ honor through his trust and faith. Perseus accepts his fate and heads into the unknown without complaint. As he wanders aimlessly around, not knowing where to turn next, Perseus heads into the second stage of the hero cycle.
Following the hero’s departure or newfound awareness of his task, the hero may reach a point where his current life feels inadequate or he feels uncertainty about his quest. This fear driven uncertainty is rightfully named refusal of the call. According to Campbell, the hero “becomes a victim to be saved” (59). This step of the cycle renders the hero defenseless and uncomfortable, as he is lost either on his quest or by his pessimistic emotions. As in Perseus’ case, the three gorgon sisters “lived on an island far out at sea, but nobody knew just where” (D’Aulaire and D’Aulaire 116). Perseus not knowing where the gorgons lived would lead him to develop negative feelings towards his quest. With no location or way to reach the gorgons, Perseus would be unable to complete his quest. What D’Aulaire would...

Find Another Essay On The Greek Hero Defined

King Oedipus as The Classical Greek Tragic Hero

1352 words - 5 pages King Oedipus as The Classical Greek Tragic Hero In his Poetics, Aristotle defined the term 'tragedy' as 'a man not preeminently virtuous and just, whose misfortune, however, is brought upon him not by vice or depravity, but by some error in judgement' the change in the hero's fortune must not be from misery to happiness, but on the contrary, from happiness to misery'. From this definition, he further expanded it by defining the profile of

Sophocles' Ajax - The Destruction of a Greek Hero

1178 words - 5 pages Sophocles' Ajax - The Destruction of a Greek Hero Sophocles' Ajax, written around 440 B.C., deals with the destruction of the Greek hero Ajax, who is sometimes considered the greatest warrior of the Trojan War, second only to Achilles. Ajax, driven insane by the goddess Athena, slaughtered the Greek herds of cattle, thinking that they were Greeks, to avenge them for rewarding the armor of Achilles to Odysseus instead of him

The Artist-Scientist: Orpheus and Daedalus. Compare and contrast two Greek myths. Make sure to link to Joseph Campbell's The Hero With A Thousand Faces

1571 words - 6 pages According to Joseph Campbell, the artist-scientist is "curiously disinterested, almost diabolic human phenomenon, beyond the normal bounds of social judgment, dedicated to the morals not of his time but of his art. He is the hero of the way of thought-singlehearted, courageous, and full of faith that the truth, as he finds it, shall make us free"(24). Orpheus is the artist and Dædalus is the scientist. These two heroes use their crafts as

The Tragedy of Jason

939 words - 4 pages Greek hero and alludes to the heroic hardships she faced in Jason’s stead during the journey back to Greece to prove it. However, Medea cannot claim the Greek title, because she is not Greek. Jason and Medea are the loosely defined heroes of the play. So in order to create an even better contrast of true and false heroes, Euripides includes the Greek hero Ageus, father of theseus, who is considered a true hero in mythology and will later have a

Our Newfangled Hero

702 words - 3 pages What does it mean to be a hero? Do heroes accomplish something legendary that will impact the coming centuries, or do heroes put themselves in harm’s way and sacrifice themselves for the benefit of all humankind? The hero originally defined by the Greeks has changed in modern times due to the integration of heroism with morality and ethics. Every supposed hero today, whether he or she is a soldier, firefighter, police officer, or doctor is

Discusses the characteristics of the Ancient Hero, defines the specific features of the epic genre

1180 words - 5 pages Ancient HeroHomer's epic poems the Iliad and the Odyssey created a classical setting for Greek Heroes. The poems are full of battles, peril and adventures that allow the heroic characters be courageous. The heroes face a barrage of arrows with out flinching and are merciless enough to kill many men with out regret. The heroic characters battle for love, duty, and to protect there homes and families.A hero is defined in Greek mythology as a

Hero: From Greek

771 words - 4 pages The word hero can easily be defined as: defines a hero as a man of distinguishes courage or ability, admired for his brave deeds and noble qualities. Hero originates from the Greek word hḗrōes. Therefore the meaning of the word itself has been influenced from Greek, the way the meaning of the word has been influenced has come from Greek literature, for example: The Odyssey by Homer. This paper will argue how the ancient

Report about the hero in American movies

620 words - 2 pages and helping people his wife wants a divorce. People can relate better to John McClain because we all have problems besides the bad guys. The hero today isn't so perfect and people are able to relate to him more easily.The travel of a hero from an average guy to a hero via the myths defined by Seger is also another determining factor in what a hero is today. McClain travels through the combination myth. He was an average cop when thrown into all

The Greek Hero's Triumph Over Monsters

1638 words - 7 pages Greece undoubtedly has one of the most interesting cultures in terms of its mythologies. Within Greek myths, the hero can be seen as representing good and can be either mortal or a demi-god. A mortal is an individual who is 100 percent human, and an example of a mortal hero within these myths Jason, of Jason and the Golden Fleece. A demi-god is defined as someone who is part human, but is also part god. In Greek myths, Hercules and Perseus are

Homeric Heros: The Greek Heroic Code

1051 words - 5 pages Odyssey. In the Iliad, Hector, Prince of Troy, is portrayed as a Greek hero because he participates in each element of the heroic code. In the Odyssey, Odysseus, King of Ithaca, is a hero according to the heroic code because of the many deeds he does on his journey home. The heroic code understood in Homer’s epics is seen through Hector and Odysseus as they conduct themselves to follow the heroic code. There are four qualities that make up the

Tragedy In Drama

1706 words - 7 pages concepts of tragedy, and demonstrate the development of the tragic form over time. The idea of Greek tragedy stems from Aristotle’s definition of a tragic hero. In Aristotle’s definition, the tragic hero must be a person of high standing so their fall from glory will be all the more horrible. The hero’s story must evoke pity for the hero and fear of his fall, so the hero cannot be completely evil. Also, the hero must have a tragic flaw, a

Similar Essays

Odysseus: The Classic Greek Hero Essay

707 words - 3 pages An Epic Hero is a person who is a prominent figure in histories and legends. Epic heroes do not posses super powers, but rely on his or her own attributes to combat some sort of battle that a typical person could not accomplish. Such Epic Heroes are read about mostly in tall tales, myths, and legends, but they all own human traits that can relate to the average person. These human traits make it easy for people, such as the Greek people, to

Oedipus The King: A Greek Tragic Hero

518 words - 2 pages The philosopher Aristotle was a highly intellectual man who loved to reason. One of his ideas was his structured analysis of the “tragic hero” of Greek drama. In his work, Poetics, he defines a tragic hero as “...The man who on the one hand is not pre-eminent in virtue and justice, and yet on the other hand does not fall into misfortune through vice or depravity, but falls because of some mistake; one among the number of the highly renowned

Oedipus The King: A Greek Tragic Hero

1141 words - 5 pages Many Greek tragedies include a central character known as "the tragic hero." In the play, Oedipus the King, by Sophocles, the character Oedipus, portrays to the reader the necessary, central, tragic hero. According to Aristotle, "a tragic hero has a supreme pride" (Jones. Pg. 133). That pride is a reflection of arrogance and conceit that suggests superiority to man and equality with the gods. Students of religion are often taught that

Is Odysseus, The Greek Hero In Homer's Odyssey, A True Hero? : Odysseus As A Hero

862 words - 3 pages that normal people may never have and thus who we admire or look up to." As it is defined that a hero affects the society, obviously, a hero reflects values, ideas, and beliefs of a particular time period. This perhaps is the most important meaning of a hero. Homer, one of the greatest Greek writers has portrayed a hero, who satisfies the definition mentioned above in an epic poem Odyssey. In Odyssey, Odysseus, the king of Ithaca and the greatest