The odyssey 4

Essay by EssaySwap ContributorHigh School, 12th grade February 2008

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A Comparison of Kings-Odysseus vs. Dusyanta Even though Homer's The Odyssey (eighth century B.C.) and Kalidasa's Sakuntala (fourth century A.D.) were written more than twelve centuries a part, many similarities can be found in the roles that the rulers in each play. The stories not only reflect the values of the cultures and times, but they also give a glimpse into the public and private lives of the nobility. Based on the vivid descriptions of their interactions with others and private thoughts, insight is gained into the responsibilities and obligations of each. These responsibilities are most apparent in the main 'rulers' of each story--Odysseus from The Odyssey and Dusyanta from Sakuntala. Although the men are put into extremely different circumstances in their respective stories, several similarities in their roles as leaders are apparent. These include helping and protecting others, being just and delivering justice, and ensuring the future of the ruling family.

Both men are portrayed as protectors in times of crises. They are looked upon for protection and help when others are in need. This is seen in Book X when Odysseus and his men land on Aiaia. They had just escaped destruction by the Laistrygonians when they made landfall here and are "worn out and sick at heart, tasting [their] grief" (153). Odysseus knows that he must take care of his men, so he decides to leave the ship and find food. It is interesting here that the crew sits on the beach for two days and none of the men make an effort to find food themselves. Instead, they wait helplessly for their captain to bring food to them. Shortly after replenishing their morale and sending a platoon to explore, Eurylokhos comes running in terror to explain that Kirke had captured the men. At this...