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Prominent Codes of Behavior in the First Half of Odyssey

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In a societal setting, codes of behavior are described as a set of principles and expectations that a member of the particular community or group should abide by at all times to make his or her life more pleasant among the other members. Codes of behavior are considered binding to a member of a particular group or society. Odyssey is a content of western literature and it is a Greek epic poem that is ascribed to Homer. It is an important aspect in the modern western canon and mainly has its ideas centered on the Greek hero known as Odysseus and his journey home after the fall of Troy and his empire. The absence of Odysseus in Ithaca makes the society to assume that he is long dead and as a result his wife, Penelope and his son, Telemachus are faced by a group of unruly suitors who want Penelope's hand in marriage. This poem was originally written in Greek language. The major codes of behavior that are depicted in Odysseus are that every member of the society should uphold the dignity of a family as exemplified by odyssey's family. The other very prominent code of behavior as seen in the text is that every member of the society has as belief in supernatural gods that help in shaping of the activities of the society. These two aspects of society are clearly seen in the first half of the poem (books1-12).

The issue of family life is elaborated very well in the first half of the text. After the disappearance of Odysseus from Ithaca, we are informed that Penelope, his wife tries to disentangle herself from the so many suitors who come to ask for her hand in marriage. We also come to understand that for the period of over ten years, she has been visited by more than one hundred men requesting her to marry them. It is also eminent that these men not only request for her hand in marriage but also eye the good things associated with the royal's prestigious life. His son, Telemachus is coming of age and therefore he has to be the next ruler of the palace once he attains the right age. As a result, there is a struggle by mother and child to drive away the suitors and also in the wait for Odysseus. In fact, the first four books appear to deal with Telemachus' coming of age and his own desire to become the king of the society (Books 1-4, lines 34-143). Following an advice given by one of the goddesses known as Athena, Telemachus holds an assembly of the island's leaders to fight against the influx of the proposed suitors into their kingdom.

During the meeting, there appears two leading suitors-Antinuos who is very aggressive and Eurymachus who is often soft spoken and they stand up to accuse Penelope of delays in choosing her future husband. Telemachus does not succeed in telling off the suitors because some of them come from very influential family backgrounds. Some of them even plot to assassinate him on his way to Pylos and Sparta. On the other hand, the strong relationship and binding of Odysseus to his family



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