What is the thematic connection between "The Lady of Shallot" and "Ulysses"?

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thanatassa eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The main thematic connection between the two texts lies in the contrast between the apparently enviable external circumstances of the protagonists and their internal lack of contentment with those circumstances. Ulysses has successfully returned home after his long voyage, is united with Penelope, famous, has a son he can be proud of, and yet is restless because he misses the life of adventure, and wishes to again embark on a voyage to do more heroic deeds.

The Lady of Shalott is wise and beautiful and rich, with many suitors, but because she to is discontent with her circumstances (unrequited love for Sir Lancelot), she also embarks on a boat journey to Camelot.