This essay should be a 600 word essay focusing on the assigned readings from Weeks 2 and 3.
This should be a close reading essay, and should use as evidence primarily passages from the story or stories that you discuss. You may not use ANY outside sources without the instructor’s approval.
The essay should be in MLA essay format (see the sample essay here) and should have the student/teacher cover letter (which should answer these questions) as the first page.
DISCLAIMER: Originality of attachments will be verified by Turnitin. Both you and your instructor will receive the results.
Choose 1 of the following topics, and write a thesis-driven essay in response to that topic:
Duty in Different Cultures: our readings in Weeks 2 and 3 show a concern for duty and responsibility. Choose one character from The Iliad or a character from The Sakuntala that was not discussed on the forum, and make a claim about how duty affects that character in the text. Be sure to explain the cultural expectations shown by the text in regards to that character’s duty, and analyze how that character does or does not fulfill those expectations.
The Role of the Supernatural: The works that we read in these three weeks have elements that take us beyond realism; in The Iliad, there is the intervention of the gods, and in The Sakuntala, a number of supernatural elements, from curses to flights to the heavens, feature in the story. Discuss either The Iliad or The Sakuntala and analyze the role of supernatural elements in the events of the story. How important a part of the plot are the supernatural elements? Could the story address the same themes without those supernatural elements?
Making a Hero: In our discussion of these works, we have talked a bit about how they all reflect elements of their cultures, particularly through the way that heroes are depicted. Choose 1 story (The Iliad OR The Sakuntala) and make a claim about what this tale shows us about heroes in the culture that created the story. Discuss no more than 2 characters from your chosen story in order to support your claim.
Make your own topic: create your own critical question to answer in your essay. If you choose this topic you must contact the instructor for approval by Thursday of Week 3. Essay submissions with unapproved topics will be returned.
Please contact the instructor with any questions. Beginning the essay early in the week is recommended, as last-minute inquiries may not be answered until after the due date.
The influence of gods in the story, ‘The lliad’s’ Sample Essay
The events in the story happen through the help of the gods. The book is made possible through the help of gods. But for the gods, the neither the book nor Troy’s wars would be possible to exist. When people infer that gods don’t exist, they assume that gods don’t interfere in people’s lives. However from the story, the interference of gods makes things very difficult and the people in the story fear and abhorred the interference. Against the people’s will, the gods have active roles in their lives and events in this story.
The gods were influenced by religion of the two societies. The religion was centered on reverence to gods. The gods portray many similar character traits as those of humans and behave inhumane ways. Their participation on the society emanates from the mating of many goddesses and gods. The gods were also intimate with the mortals and bore them children. They thus interfere to protect their children or assist them when they have problems. The gods feel that they brought a lot of fate to the children that they sired with the mortals.
The gods supporting the Greeks were named Hera, Athena, Poseidon and Hermes. Those supporting the Trojans included Aphrodite, Leto, Apollo and Artemis. Hera was powerful and hated the Trojans so much. She went against Zeus’s advice and helped the mortals to destroy the Trojans. Athena, a goddess of wisdom also despised the Trojans. She assisted the mortals whenever they sought her help against the Trojans. The king, Zeus was neutral to both groups. His efforts were to pacify the two groups.
The gods chose sides and helped the group that they favored. Poseidon, the god of the sea chose to favor the Greeks as they travelled via the sea more often. The writer used the gods in the story to bring out various twists of events. When the story starts, Athena belittled herself to agitate the Trojans to start a fight with the Greeks. A hero, Achilles got angry. He started killing people and threw them into the river. As a result, he woke the river god who made him promise to stop throwing the dead into the river. The two groups claimed that the war was about a girl called Helene. However, the events were controlled by the gods. The gods often fought each other. They thus took sides with mortals to get back on each other.
The effects of the gods’ interference cannot be under estimated. But for them, no war would result between the two groups. The supernatural beings control the story’s events. The events that unfold result from gods feuds with each other. The gods in either side did everything to persuade mortal heroes to engage in the battle. They even joined the mortals in the battle and killed so many innocent people.
The goddesses, Hera and Athena worked together to device ways of defeating the Trojans. Hera even seduces the king in a dream so that the Greeks could get time to attack the Trojans without Zeus’ knowledge. The gods are always cunning and fighting. The result is a lot of confusion and disaster to the mortals. The humans wished that the gods would stop interfering in their lives, but in vain.
Zeus was against the gods taking part in the war with mortals. However, the gods fail to take his advice and instead control the battle. All events from the start of the war, the winner of the battle and the mortals’ fate in the story, were under the gods’ control. Zeus was very temperamental and brought defeat to either side, depending on his emotional strain. The other gods fight side by side to defeat their opponents. The result is a lot of killing and disaster to the mortals in the two societies.
In “The Iliad,” the gods play a significant role in the story. They are depicted as immortal beings who live on Mount Olympus and are involved in the affairs of mortals. The gods are often depicted as intervening in the events of the Trojan War, which is the main focus of the poem.
The gods are portrayed as being powerful and able to affect the outcome of events, but they are also depicted as being subject to their own emotions and desires. The gods are often depicted as taking sides in the war, with some supporting the Trojans and others supporting the Greeks.
The gods are also depicted as being able to communicate with mortals and offer them guidance or assistance. For example, the god Zeus sends the goddess Athena to aid the Greeks in battle, while the god Apollo helps the Trojans.
The gods play a significant role in “The Iliad” and their actions and interventions have a significant impact on the events of the story.