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Timbuktu1
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The Odyssey

I was just wondering if anyone out there read the Calypso segment as an allegory? I understood it literally, but I also have a feeling that Odyseus is held there in part by his own desire. His struggle to return home was sidetracked by his passion for Calypso. Maybe this is a stretch, just wondering if anyone else read it that way too.
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Trillian-Lali
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Re: The Odyssey

I have to admit that I never actually read that particular section of the Odyssey that way; although I certainly see where you could interpret Odysseus's captivity as personal choice rather than forced submission.

For me that section has always been more intriguing as a look at female sexuality and gender relations. Many gods are upset by Calypso taking (forcibly) a human lover despite the fact that the male gods do so quite often. And she calls them out on this. I've always found that rather interesting, and I must admit my students do as well (I'm an English Professor).
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Timbuktu1
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Re: The Odyssey



Trillian-Lali wrote:
I have to admit that I never actually read that particular section of the Odyssey that way; although I certainly see where you could interpret Odysseus's captivity as personal choice rather than forced submission.

For me that section has always been more intriguing as a look at female sexuality and gender relations. Many gods are upset by Calypso taking (forcibly) a human lover despite the fact that the male gods do so quite often. And she calls them out on this. I've always found that rather interesting, and I must admit my students do as well (I'm an English Professor).




Interesting point! It does seem that the women (goddesses?) in the Odyssey pursue Odysseus much more aggressively than he does them. I guess you could put the two together and think of Odysseus as unable to free himself from their pursuit as well as his own desire/weakness. He easily rejects the princess on Phaicia but she's mortal. It's the goddesses who have sway over him.
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Jessica
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Re: The Odyssey

Just a reminder, the Epics book club will be discussing The Odyssey, starting in April, running through June!
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Timbuktu1
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Re: The Odyssey



Jessica wrote:
Just a reminder, the Epics book club will be discussing The Odyssey, starting in April, running through June!





Hooray! Looking forward to it!
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Trillian-Lali
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Re: The Odyssey

Awesome. I did not know that.