Beowulf Today Essay

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Written Assignment #1 If modern people would read Beowulf today, they would most likely be able to relate to the title character’s personality and motivations as well as other characters in the poem. They would be able to sympathize with some of the actions taken throughout the poem that would otherwise be labeled as morally bad, “Pagan” choices in the Anglo-Saxon period. Back then, Beowulf would have been considered a selfish character by the masses, considering the huge amount of the audience who followed the Christian tradition way of things. They would have thought of him as selfish, and not the proper “hero” people would have thought he should be. But today in modern society, we understand his motivations and actions and think of them…show more content…
This is especially evident in sporty environments and group performances. People would much rather have all the attention and praise to themselves, so they try to outdo everyone to single themselves out, similar to how Beowulf did not wish to fight with an army, because he has enough pride in himself that he believes that he can defeat it by himself. While we do not live by Pagan versus Christian traditions anymore, we see these sorts of actions as things based on our sense of morality, bad morals and good morals. Good morality, to our standards, is being able to show selflessness, altruism, and kindness. Bad morality would be showing self-serving, boasting qualities. The general behavior and actions of our society and Beowulf are very much the same, besides modern society having a more simplistic, less violent way of living. We might not have to worry about being attacked by a monster, or seriously sacrificing people’s live so easily, like in these Anglo-Saxon tales, but we can still relate to Beowulf’s paganism, his motivations, and his actions. In modern times, we find this easy to do because, unlike in Beowulf, we are not so easily stigmatized for this behavior by a large audience. When we read this story, we don’t judge Beowulf that harshly, because we see ourselves, to a degree, in his

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