The Odyssey by Homer

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What other book can I compare "The Odyssey" with that may have epic conventions? What other book can I compare "The Odyssey" with that may have epic conventions?

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geosc eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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Margaret Mitchell’s Gone with the Wind is the Southern epic. It is about the journey of a flawed heroine from a position of status, through downfall and ruin with much trial and tribulation, to a new position of some status. It exemplifies the unique traits of the Old South civilization. Southern Partisan magazine listed it as one of 15 essential books on the civilization of the American South, describing it as a "not entirely accurate...portrait of the Old South...but mostly it was," and more accurate than the movie. Two articles that treat it favorably, though having much different emphasis are:

Cantrell, James P. 2006. "The Southern Epic and Its Sequel: Margaret Mitchell and Scarlett" in How Celtic Culture Invented Southern Literature. Gretna, La.: Pelican, chapter VIII, p. 193-208.

Pattison, Robert. "Gone with the Wind: A Reappraisal," Tennessee Studies in Literature, 26, (1981), 142-156.

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McKinstry Rose eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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Have you tried Beowulf?  It has all the conventions of an epic hero.  Another comparative piece that is certainly more modern is the original Star Wars.  If you focus on Luke Skywalker, you will be able to make many comparison point between him and his adventures and Odysseus's.  I'm not sure if you need a classical piece or not, but if so, Beowulf will work for that.

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sfwriter eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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A classic English-language epic is Paradise Lost by John Milton.  While it is not an easy read, it is easily among the few most influential poems written in English in the last 500 years.  It has elements which are very similar to the Odyssey (such as the story of a beleagured hero), but there are significant differences (despite being composed about two millenia apart from each other!), namely that Milton's vision was specifically Christian, while Homer's epic is about the pagan worldview.  But many of the poetic conventions are the same, and a comparison between the two works would yield interesting distinctions and illuminations of each poem.  Best of luck! 

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James Kelley eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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James Joyce's novel Ulysses is an obvious but not easy choice, The novel is challenging to read and pretty long (it took me a full week, reading 5 or so hours a day, to make it though the whole thing), but I'm certain that you would see strong parallels to the Odyssey . Those parallels aren't by chance; the modern Irish writer modeled his story pretty closely on the Greek epic, even as he changed the setting to Dublin. The good thing about Joyce's novel, too, is that it's made up of fairly...

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James Kelley eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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udonbutterfly | Student

If you were to put it in simple terms the Odyssey is about someone who goes on a journey and defies the odds in order to reunite with his family. Other stories that have a similar frame would be...

The Aeneid by Virgil

The Metamorphoses by Ovid Choose your pick with this!

Percy Jackson and the Olympians By Rick Riordan (only if you want to push the envelope with this one!)

Then there is always the Iliad by Homer which is a prequel to the odyssey. You compare Odysseus's journey between then and now.

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florine | Student

  The Divine Comedy by Dante would be a good idea. The poem was written in the journey form. The poet travels from the Inferno up to Eartly Paradise. It was conceived as "the new epic of Christendom." It is a journey toward revealed knowledge, the vision of a world suffused with light:

      "In that light a man becomes such

       That it is impossible he should turn away

      Ever to look upon any other thing."

 

  

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treebell1234 | Student

the hobbit.

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kiwi354 | Student

I just read the epic of Gilgamesh in my pre-AP world history class and it is a great one to compare it to.

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