2097 words 9 pagesSpring
University of Miami
University of Miami
Midtem #1/ENG 201-N
#1. Discuss the character of Achilles in Homer’s Iliad. What is the nature of the existential crisis in which he finds himself, and why is his relationship to both gods and the other Greek warriors so unusual? What realization does he arrive at during his period of withdrawal from the battlefield? What does it mean to say that he is probably the first true individual as well as the first “problem character,” in Western literature? Finally, discuss the reader’s response to his behavior. In what ways does Achilles repel our human sympathies? In what ways does he maintain or regain them? In this context you will certainly want to discuss his …show more content…
She convinces Zeus and even though the Trojans march ahead, Achilles pays a heavy price for his request. He loses his best friend, the person he is closest to, Patroclus. Thetis interferes again, when Achilles decides to join the war and avenge the death of Patroclus, and get his body back. She gives Hephaestus a visit and requests him to make her son a new armor. Hephaestus forges for Achilles a breastplate, a helmet and a shield that has images of dancing children, constellations etc. without asking any further questions. Despite being the son of two gods, Achilles is made painfully aware of the short amount of time he has left. His mother constantly reminds him that regardless of which path he takes; his time on Earth is limited. He can either go back to his home and die peacefully or he can join the war and die there.
Other occasions on which the Gods favor Achilles is when Iris, sent by Hera, tells Achilles that he must go back to war, that his appearance will discourage the Trojans and cause them to leave behind the body of Patroclus. The same night that Achilles decides to step back into the war, Athena robs the Trojans of their wisdom, causing Hector to reject the idea of retreating back into the safety of their city, instead, he insists on fighting more. It seems as if the Gods are changing how the war takes place, very well knowing what the outcome