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Odysseus does not tell his crew everything Teiresias and Circe predict will happen to...

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alexam1996 | Student, Grade 12 | eNoter

Posted June 10, 2013 at 7:56 PM via web

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Odysseus does not tell his crew everything Teiresias and Circe predict will happen to them as they get closer to home. Do you think Odysseus' decision to withhold this information is a good one?

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noahvox2 | College Teacher | (Level 2) Educator

Posted June 18, 2013 at 11:32 PM (Answer #1)

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This is a difficult question. On one hand, we can understand why Odysseus does not choose to tell his men about all of the dangers they will encounter on their way home. The main point at which this comes into play is when Odysseus and company have to row between the Scylla and Charybdis. If Odysseus' crew had known about the danger, then this might have resulted in complete destruction of their group.

On the other hand, even when Odysseus does tell his crew about various dangers, as in the case of the sun god's cattle, they still are disobedient.

Clearly, Odysseus has challenges in communication with his comrades. Failure to communicate about the bag of winds given to Odysseus in Book 10 results in the group being blown back to Aeolia after they had been within sight of Ithaca's shores.

Is Odysseus' decision to withhold information from his crew a good one? In some cases, yes; in other cases, no.

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