Redemtive Vilonce in the Odyssey by Homer
Redemptive Violence in The Odyssey Hayden Robinson The myth of redemptive violence is one that is told throughout history. It is one in which violence is the creator. Whether it be production of the cosmos, peace, or some other result, in this misconception violence leads to redemption. This misconception has been inserted in our society to such a degree that it is naturalized and accepted as the method things lack much reflection. For example, many Christians probably don’t contemplate the ways redemptive violence is at the heart of their faith. A traditional example of the myth of redemptive violence is found in the sophisticated poem The Odyssey.
Numerous aspects of violence and how we connect with violence are explored within the wide range of pages of this tale. In book 9 Odysseus needs to face Polythemus, the Cyclops who is Poseidon’s boy. Odysseus and his men where caught within Polythemus’s cave, which had wine and other high-ends in it. But the Cyclops is intent on eating every last one of them and saving Odysseus, or “Nohbdy,” as Odysseus provided himself to the Cyclops, for last. Odysseus later on blinds Polythemus with a burning stick, leaving him aggrieved and in pain.
Writhing in pain, he opens the rock, letting Odysseus’s crew escape. This is just a primal form of the misconception, however by injuring Polythemus Odysseys is launched, highlighting the productive side of violence. In book 10 Odysseus discovers himself on the island of Aeolus, which is inhabited by the witch Circe. She lures Odysseus’s guys into her house and turns them into swine. Odysseus, who has a remedy to the witch’s drugs provided to him by the god Hermes, is immune to the witch’s drugs and threatens her with the violence of his sword and she takes him to her bed where he encouraged her to alter back his men.
This tale within The Odyssey is among violence such those Walter Wink wrote about in “The Myth of Redemptive Violence.” He writes, “cosmic order requires the violent suppression of the feminine and is mirrored in the social order by the subjugation of females to males and individuals to ruler.” Wink goes on to describe that this pattern can be found in Greek misconceptions and in a range of other cultural expressions through history, right as much as cartoons in contemporary media.
Central to this version of the myth is the suppression of effective females, and their bodies are laid out to produce the cosmos in many cases. The Odyssey offers a classic example: Circe, an effective temptress, is suppressed by Odysseus’s danger of violence, therefore putting Odysseus socially above her. Throughout the book Odysseus is faced with endless difficulties. He is thrown through huge and ruthless life threatening experiences. He then gets home and discovers that he must contend for his better half. These travails point towards paradoxes in the human condition.
Sometimes, we yearn for discomfort and it permits us to associate our inner evils and our violence, and that is precisely what The Odyssey does. As Wink mentioned in his analysis of a cartoon, “the ‘Tammuz’ component where the hero suffers– in fact takes in all however the closing minutes, allowing sufficient time for indulging the violent side of the self. When the hero finally wins, viewers are then able to reassert control over their inner tendencies, repress them, and re-establish a sense of goodness …” We get a good look at this procedure in The Odyssey, specifically when Penelope asks, how do you move the bed?
Odysseus replies, you can’t due to the fact that I made it out of a live olive tree, showing that he was really Odysseus. The Odyssey is filled with redemptive violence, whether it be against Troy, Scally and Charibdys, Circe, and, most especially, the slaughtering of the suitors. The violence is not all simply easy, there are power hierarchies, intricate relationships, and other elements to account for in viewing violence in this incredible story.