Homer's The Odyssey: The Real Hero

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According to Umberto Eco, “The real hero is always a hero by mistake; he dreams of being an honest coward like everybody else”. Never does a hero attempt to be heroic; instead they simply perform acts of good without thinking of themselves. It has become common today to think heroes are made of pure bravery, have no fear, and long for justice, but realistically, that does not make a hero. Though many traits can make up a hero, the defining characteristic is selflessness, or willing to go beyond what is expected of them for what is morally right. Though it may seem like he doesn’t make the most selfless decisions, Odysseus, from Homer’s epic poem The Odyssey fits the description of a hero because he makes these decisions for the greater good.…show more content…
Rather than avenging his men and prevent any more losses, Odysseus decides to wait not because he is saving himself, but rather that he doesn’t want to trap him and his crew in the cave. Instead of losing all of his men, Odysseus would prefer to lose only a couple. Another example includes when Odysseus’ crew stops working the boat out of fear of Charybdis; Odysseus peps them yet does not warn them of another danger they must cross: Scylla, the many headed creature. By not telling his crew of the danger, he prevents both the crew from stopping the ship and Scylla from taking any more lives, despite having his crew be oblivious to the danger. After regretfully choosing to land on Helios’ island, Odysseus demands that “any herd of cattle or flock of sheep” shall not be “[slaughtered]…show more content…
In return for his peaceful protests, King was met with the exact opposite: “Often the demonstrations against unjust laws were met with police and segregationist violence and force. In the face of high-pressured water jets and police dogs, massive arrests as well as bomb and death threats, Martin Luther King, Jr. continued to persuade those fighting for civil rights to remember that their goal was unity and peace” (“Martin Luther King, Jr.- Moral Heroes”). While some gave up in the fight for racial equality, King did not think of himself by giving up when his protests were violently opposed by segregationists. Instead he chose to remain peaceful in his protests no matter how much force those opposed used. This emphasized his strong beliefs that he was doing the right thing because rather than forcing his beliefs on others through violence, he chose to send a message by remaining nonviolent. After the Rosa Park Bus Incident in 1955, King arranged a boycott of the Montgomery bus service. Of its demands were respect from other passengers towards black passengers as well as a “first-come-first-serve basis” where there were no reserved seats. Though King and his colleague Ralph Abernathy were

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