Oral Tradition (03:55)
Little is known about Homer, the author of "The Odyssey" and "The Iliad." Written around 700 B.C., the work is based on stories about events that occurred centuries earlier. In book eight, Demodocus, a blind poet, recites two narrative poems. Sung poems contain discrepancies.
"The Odyssey": First Four Books (03:53)
The newest song is always best. Homer's poems are unique, original, and avant-garde; he concentrated on one hero's epic journey. Telemachus, unhappy about his mother's suitors, searches for news of Odysseus; Aegisthus and Clytemnestra plot to kill Agamemnon.
"The Odyssey": Books Five to Eight (03:37)
Odysseus has spent seven years as Calypso's captive. The first four books describe how Telemachus needs to become an adult and deal with his mother Penelope's suitors. After hearing Demodocus' songs, Odysseus reveals his identity.
"The Odyssey": Books Nine to Twelve (04:15)
Experts discuss mythological creatures such as Scylla and Charybdis. All Odysseus' comrades die because they succumb to temptation. Book eleven recounts Odysseus' travels into the underworld.
"The Odyssey": Second Half (05:22)
Penelope challenges her suitors to string her husband's bow. Odysseus initially conceals himself as a beggar; he reveals himself to his son and wife in powerful scenes. Agamemnon compares Clytemnestra to Penelope.
"The Odyssey": the Gods (02:58)
Odysseus is brave, resourceful, and cunning. Poseidon is angry with the hero because he blinded the cyclops Polyphemus. Experts discuss Odysseus' relationship with Athena.
"The Odyssey": Monsters (05:11)
Circe, the sirens, Scylla, and Charybdis are temptations blocking Odysseus' journey. Penelope challenges her suitors to string Odysseus' bow. Themes of the story include friendship, perseverance, self-control, character, and marriage.
Credits: Literary Classics- The Odyssey (00:30)
Credits: Literary Classics- The Odyssey
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