How is the complaint the Achilles conveys to his mother  related to him having chosen a short but glorious life?

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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In the final analysis, Achilles approaches his mother with the underlying assertion that he has opted for greatness in the short term  of being.  Achilles' approaching his mother in the first book is a clear statement that he finds it acceptable to have a short life if glory and honor are represented.  The complaint to his mother in which he begs her to plead with Zeus for intervention is related to Achilles' own pride, a brutally human part of the divine warrior.  Achilles' complaint goes to his own pride, which he feels was offended by Agamemnon.  The fact that he is fine with a short but glorious life is reflective of this pride and sense of hubris in Achilles.  I think that his complaint is reflective of this.  His desire for greatness in this life is rooted in how he asks his mother to enable Zeus to intervene in a manner that will heighten his own glory.  For Achilles, his own pride becomes on display in the first book.  It is something that defines his character, making it clear that he would be willing to experience a short, but glorious life than all other elements.  The complaint and request he gives to his mother is reflective of how the work is an inevitable progression towards his own death.  Such a condition highlights how the human penchant for glory and a sense of greatness in this life inevitably defines consciousness.

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