The Odyssey: The Lotus Eaters By Michael C. 18 October 2006 Block F
Plot Summary • Odysseus and his men made their way to Ismaros where they met the Ciconians. • They destroyed the city, killed the men, and kept the women, some cattle, and goods. • The men had a feast, but some Ciconians, held captive, escaped to their neighbors. • The neighbors came and killed six men from each ship, while Odysseus and his men went to safety.
Plot Summary cont. • Zeus sent clouds over the land and sea and brought night to earth. • The winds were so strong that the ships’ sails ripped, and the men spent two days and two nights in hardship and anxiety. • On the third day, light came, but the sea current and wind brought the boats outside Cythera. • They spent nine more days out at sea, but on the tenth, they reached the land of the lotus-eaters, who get their food from flowers.
Odysseus sent some men to meet the lotus-eaters, and they did no harm to them. The men were given some honey-sweet lotus fruit, and when they ate it, they did not come back and wanted more. Odysseus came to get them and tied them up by force. The men were back in the ocean and were on their way to the land of the Cyclopians. Plot Summary cont.
Odysseus-The whole story revolves around him. After the Trojan war, Odysseus and his men were on their way back home to Ithaca. Odysseus and his men went through many obstacles. Odysseus was held captive by Calypso, the “husband-to-be” by Circe, and trapped inside Cyclops's cave. He went through many trials and troubles, but was able to get back to Ithaca and see his wife, Penelope, and son, Telemachos. Characters
Characters cont. • Ciconians-They are the people on the island of Ismaros. • Odysseus and his men brought destruction and ruin to the people, and kept the women and some goods for themselves. • Some were able to escape to their other neighbors and brought death to six of Odysseus’s men. • They forced the men off their island, and were able to live back to their lives.
Characters cont. • Zeus-He is the king of the gods, and the ruler of earth. • After Odysseus escaped from the Ciconians, he brought night over earth, very strong winds, and violent waves of fury. • Zeus controls the fates of all men on earth and uses them for his pleasure and entertainment.
Characters cont. • Lotus Eaters-These are the people whom some of Odysseus’s men met. • They get their food, which is lotus, from flowers. • Lotus is very honey-sweet and makes its eaters want more.
Lotus Symbols • The lotus represents many things. • It can represent the good life, wanting to stay and never coming back, not wanting to do anything, and selfishness and greed. • More…more…more, two of the 7 deadliest sins (greed and gluttony), and forgetting about everything else and only caring for your needs are also things that can symbolize the use of lotus in the text.
Conflict • A conflict in the adventure was man vs. temptations (rather himself) because the men that ate the lotus fruit were tempted to eat more. • Another conflict is man vs. greed and the “majority’s pick” because the men wanted more and a majority of people would have picked the easy way out.
Greek society • In Greek society, a majority of men (and some women) want more in life and are greedy. • Most of the time, after men destroy a city, they take the original owners’ belongings, such as women, animals, and goods. • Sometimes the Greeks want an easy life and only think about their needs, stating that they are selfish.
Modern Society Event in the Bible • Even though the Bible is old, it connects to the lotus eater adventure. • In the story of the Prodigal son, a father gives his son all of his money, but the son wastes all of it for himself. • In connection to the adventure, the Prodigal son represents the men that ate the lotus, the money represents the lotus, and the spending of money represents Odysseus’s taking away the men from the lotus.
Modern Society Event in Current Events • Terry Schiavo case-The case in which Terry Schaivo, a woman in a vegetable-like state, had her “plug” pulled by her husband Michael. • This connects to the adventure because most of society wanted to keep her alive and going, but her husband, on the contrary, pulled her “plug”.
Modern Society Event in Current Events • In the text, the lotus eaters, representing most of society, wanted the men, symbolizing Terry, to have more, but Odysseus, as a sign of Terry’s husband, got the men to stop. • The action of Odysseus’s taking away represents when Terry’s husband took her life away.
Modern Society Event in a Movie and Book • In the Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens, Scrooge, a very greedy man, had his life changed by three ghosts (past, present, and future). • Scrooge was greedy and a grouch, but three ghosts changed his whereabouts, meaning that the men were greedy and stayed to eat, but Odysseus tied them up to keep.
Modern Society Event in a Movie and Book • Scrooge was represented by the men who ate the lotus. • His money symbolizes the lotus fruit. • Odysseus represents the three ghosts who changed Scrooge’s mean acts and got him to be giving.
Difference Between Modern and Greek Society • In Greek society, men took things for themselves by force, but in today’s society, people take things for themselves by choice. • Back in Greek society, they probably didn’t know it was a sin to be greedy and eat with greed, but now, it is a deadly sin to be greedy and eat a lot (gluttony). • Still, some people today and back then want the easy way in life and only think for their needs (selfishness).
Bibliography • Virtual Odyssey. 12 Oct. 2006 <http://library.thinkquest.org/19300/data/Odyssey/virtodyssey4.htm>. • Literature Timeline. 12 Oct. 2006 <http://www.socsdteachers.org/tzenglish/litera... >. • Diospyros lotus. 16 Oct. 2006 <http://220.127.116.11/cgi-bin/dol/dol_image_win.pl?image_id=9461&image_file=http://18.104.22.168/users/dws/10_24_04/DWSMisc12/Diospyros_lotusFruit2.jpg&family=Ebenaceae&genus=Diospyros&species=lotus>. • Art. 16 Oct. 2006 <http://www.sikyon.com/Olympia/Art/olymp_eg00a.html >.
Bibliography cont. • Sacraments: Reconciliation/Penance.16 Oct. 2006<http://www.stblase.org/sacraments/penance.htm>. • Dead Bodies, Inc.17 Oct 2006 <http://www.deadbodiesinc.com/article.php/73/1/robot_advice.php >. • Bad Attitudes. 17 Oct. 2006 <http://badattitudes.com/MT/archives/003471.html>.