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Word Count: 1,956
According to Auerbach the epic literature styles of the Old Testament and the Odyssey are both archetypes for two styles of epic literature The Old Testament has a vertical connection a nature spanning reams of text describing Jehovahs peoples journey This is fraught with conflict and dissension as the Israelites lose their way only to regain His trust how else would they wander in the desert for forty years This is contrasted with the Odysseys horizontal connection with rich and ornate tapestries of meaning oozing out from the pages about Odysseus 20 year nostos the epitome of logical detailed and mythic storytelling Reality is thus shown to Auerbach stylistically as fully visible and palatable in the Odyssey for the epic seeks to to overcome our reality whereas the Old Testaments stylistic reality feels more visceral more understandable so the readers perspective is shaped within its world The Odyssey represents myth and legend and as such does not carry with it the burden the Old Testament doesit is multilayered from many perspectives Readers are taken from Telemachus perspective to Odysseus in the span of a few pages In the reading excerpt in the middle of Eurycleia washing the strangers feet she spots a scar that proves he is Odysseus Then the reader is transported through almost a glass window seeing how Odysseus received that scar while boar hunting with his father Autolycus This diversion is neither tedious nor does it break the suspense Rather because the Odyssey is not constrained to interpret realityand it may once have been a song the reader learns another piece of Odysseus history independent of his personality This is indicative of the Homers style Odysseus is a mythic character he is unchanging and steadfast he is the archetype of the strong silent man Odysseus personality is not concentrated on for Odysseus is a legend meant to be looked on as an ideal character Thus the Odyssey transports readers to another
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