Describe how the ideals of the Homeric epics – as reflected in literature, sculpture, and even pottery – might have shaped modern self-identity.

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thanatassa eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The ideals deriving from the Homeric epics and subsequent Homeric-themed iconography affect modern identities mainly through pedagogy. For example, Derek Walcott's "Omeros" shoes how the Homeric model of epic, as it has influenced the western tradition both becomes an ideal and an obstacle for the development of Caribbean identity. Similarly, one might say that Homeric imagery, whether the immediate verbal imagery of the poem, or its imitation in visual art and popular media, shapes gender ideals of masculine strength and feminine loyalty and beauty that continue to function iconically and determine how we perform gender roles within today's society.