2010 Student Research Conference:
23rd Annual Student Research Conference

The Battle for Identity: Odysseus at War in The Odyssey
Bethany J. Hoekzema
Dr. Molly K. Herbert, Faculty Mentor

Although the Trojan War has ended and most of its heroes have returned home by the time the muse takes up Odysseus story, The Odyssey is nonetheless a poem filled with scenes and images of war, many of them reminiscent of the Iliad. Unlike the armies in the Iliad, however, Odysseus battles not so much against human or even divine enemies as against anonymity. By studying the historical context of the poem as well as its literary structure, it becomes apparent that the scenes and images of warfare in The Odyssey serve a philosophical purpose: to embody the ancient struggle for identity and immortality within Odysseus ongoing battle against anonymity.

Keywords: The Odyssey, identity, war, Homer


Presentation Type: Oral Paper

Session: 59-2
Location: MG 2050
Time: 3:00

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