The Odyssey

A Mindmap of the Odyssey

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The Odyssey Door Mind Map: The Odyssey

1. Characters (Color Coded by which chapter they first appeared "or are talked about in if they aren't shown")

1.1. Odysseus

1.1.1. The protagonist of the Odyssey. Odysseus fought at Troy and now struggles to return to Ithaca. Odysseus is the husband of Queen Penelope and the dad of Prince Telemachus. He is constantly sleeping with other women, while Penelope stays loyal to him.

1.2. Telemachus

1.2.1. Son of Odysseus and Penelope. Although an infant when Odysseus left for war, he is twenty years old at the beginning of the story. He is a good son, but not a good ruler. He struggles to keep out the suitors that are constantly courting his mother.

1.3. Penelope

1.3.1. Mother of Prince Telemachus and wife of Odysseus. Constantly waiting for Odysseus, and stays true and loyal to him.

1.4. Athena

1.4.1. Goddess, daughter of Zeus. She is the goddess of wisdom and strategic battle. She assists Telemachus and Odysseus, and disguises herself as an old friend of Odysseus.

1.5. Poseidon

1.5.1. Brother of Zeus, father of Cyclops Polyphemus. Antagonist of Odysseus, hates him, and constantly ruins Odysseus's journey home. He is however, the patron of the Phaeacians, who assist Odysseus in his journey home.

1.6. Zeus

1.6.1. King of all gods and he is the god of lightning. He helps Odysseus, but also hurts him.

1.7. Antinous

1.7.1. Most annoying and mean of all of Penelope's suitors. He tries to have Telemachus killed by leading a campaign.

1.8. Amphinomus

1.8.1. A suitor who isn't as bad as the other ones. Sometimes speaks good of Telemachus and Odysseus. Is destined to die at hands of Telemachus by Athena.

1.9. Eurycleia

1.9.1. Servant who nursed both Odysseus and Telemachus as babies. She keeps Telemachus's journey a secret from Penelope. She also recognizes Odysseus in the ending.

1.10. Melanthius

1.10.1. Brother of Melantho. He is a goat herder who supports the suitors, mainly Eurymachus. He abuses Odysseus in disguise as a beggar upon his return.

1.11. Melantho

1.11.1. Sister of Melanthius, maid in palace. She has an affair with Eurymachus, and also abuses the beggar in the palace, who is Odysseus in disguise.

1.12. Calypso

1.12.1. Nymph, falls in love with Odysseus, and holds him on her island for seven year until Hermes allows him to leave.

1.13. Polyphemus

1.13.1. Cyclops, tries to eat Odysseus and his crew after Odysseus comes to his island. His eye is gouged out by Odysseus, which angers Polyphemus's father, Poseidon.

1.14. Circe

1.14.1. Witch/Goddess who transforms Odysseus's crew into swine. Hermes gives Odysseus a potion that makes him become Circe's lover, and stays with her for a year.

1.15. Tiresias

1.15.1. A prophet in the underworld. He meets Odysseus when he goes to the underworld. He helps him talk with souls, and assists him in learning how to get back to Ithaca.

1.16. Nestor (Book 3)

1.16.1. King of Pylos, former warrior in Trojan War. Telemachus visits him to ask of his father's whereabouts, but he doesn't know.

1.17. Menelaus (Only talked about)

1.17.1. King of Sparta, brother of Agamemnon, husband of Helen. He led the Greeks in the Trojan War.

1.18. Helen

1.18.1. Wife of Menelaus, Queen of Sparta. Her abduction from Sparta by the Trojans started the Trojan War. She helps Telemachus in his quest to find his father.

1.19. Agamemnon (Only talked about)

1.19.1. King of Mycenae, brother of Menelaus, commander of Achaean warriors at Troy. He was murdered by his wife Clytemnestra and her lover, Aegisthus upon his return. His son Orestes then avenged his death by killing the two. He met Odysseus in the underworld.

1.20. Alcinous

1.20.1. King of Phaeacians, offers Odysseus hospitality, and after hearing of his story, he makes sure he has a safe passage back to his home in Ithaca.

1.21. Orestes (Only talked about)

1.21.1. Son of Agamemnon and Clytemnestra. He kills his mother and her lover Aegisthus for killing his father. Orestes is constantly compared to Telemachus.

1.22. King Aeolus

1.22.1. When Odysseus and his men showed up on Aeolus's island without anything, he gave them an ox-skin bag containing all four winds.

1.23. Hermes

1.23.1. Messenger God, helps Odysseus on Circe's island, and tells Calypso to let him go.

1.24. Ino

1.24.1. A sea nymph, saves Odysseus's life by giving him a veil to help him swim.

1.25. Eumaeus

1.25.1. A loyal swineherd who gives Odysseus food and shelter when he is in disguise as an old beggar. One of the few still loyal to Odysseus.

1.26. Scylla and Charybdis (Chapter 12)

1.26.1. Both monsters of the sea of which Odysseus has to pass through.

2. Motifs

2.1. Gender roles

2.1.1. Odysseus sleeping with other women

2.1.1.1. Odysseus may sleep with other women, even though his wife is waiting for him and going through so much.

2.1.2. Penelope ignoring suitors

2.1.2.1. Penelope ignores the suitors, knowing she must stay faithful to her husband Odysseus.

2.2. Xenia

2.2.1. Telemachus to Athena

2.2.1.1. Even when he didn't know that the person that showed up in town was Athena, he provided hospitality. Even in his struggle for finding his father, he put it aside and decided to help her out.

2.2.2. King Alcinous to Odysseus

2.2.2.1. King Alcinous didn't even know who Odysseus was, but he took him in and gave him food and shelter. He listened to his entire story and provided him with a crew, ship, and supplies to get back to his home in Ithaca.

2.3. Hubris

2.3.1. Odysseus to Polyphemus and Poseidon

2.3.1.1. Odysseus fights Polyphemus and even takes his eye out. In doing so, he starts to develop an enmity with Poseidon when he leaves after fighting Polyphemus and gives him his name, causing much, much more to happen to him.

2.3.2. Odysseus bragging (Throughout)

2.3.2.1. Odysseus may be smart and strong, but he has a bad habit of bragging to others about himself, and how great he is.

2.4. Fate/Omens

2.4.1. Suitors fate of Odysseus's avenge by Athena

2.4.1.1. Athena foreshadows that Odysseus will avenge himself, and he does.

2.4.2. The islands where Odysseus ends up are chosen by the gods (Throughout)

2.4.2.1. The islands where Odysseus ends up are fate, and they affect his future differently.

3. Relationships

3.1. Ino saves Odysseus's life

3.1.1. Ino gives Odysseus a veil to help him swim and not die.

3.2. Alcinous helps Odysseus

3.2.1. Alcinous helps out Odysseus even though he doesn't know him, and he just washed up on the shore.

3.3. Hermes occasionally helps out Odysseus (First in Book 5, but there are more)

3.3.1. Hermes first helped Odysseus when he told Calypso to let go of him from Zeus's orders. He also gave him a potion so Circe would love him.

3.4. Eumaeus helps Odysseus, not knowing it is him

3.4.1. The loyal shepherd sees Odysseus at his door of his hut. He thinks it is a beggar, not Odysseus. He still gives him food and shelter.

3.5. Helen helps Telemachus in his quest to find his father

3.5.1. Helen and her husband, Menelaus help and support Telemachus with supplies and some wisdom before he leaves to try to find his father.

3.6. Athena and Odysseus (Throughout)

3.6.1. Athena repeatedly helps Odysseus, first she convinces her father to keep him alive, then she curses the suitors, and in the end, she helps him in knowing that he is in Ithaca.

3.7. Odysseus's Crew and Odysseus (Book 13)

3.7.1. Odysseus is bound to the ship when he hears the singing of the sirens, and his faithful crew does not let him budge or move from his spot, preventing him from possible death.

4. Conflicts

4.1. Polyphemus vs Odysseus (Man vs Man)

4.1.1. Odysseus fights against Polyphemus for his survival, while Polyphemus fights him for coming on his land and island

4.2. Penelope vs Suitors (Man vs Society)

4.2.1. Penelope silently fights the suitors who are constantly trying to get her to marry them. Penelope comes up with quick excuses such as the burial shroud to get rid of them temporarily.

4.3. Poseidon vs Odysseus (Nature/God vs Man)

4.3.1. Poseidon hates Odysseus after he blinded Polyphemus by gouging out his eye, not knowing his father, Poseidon, was going to cause him so much trouble and misery on his voyage home.

4.4. Odysseus vs Odysseus (Man vs Self) THROUGHOUT ENTIRE BOOK

4.4.1. Odysseus struggles to keep up with himself as he continuously shows his flaws of ego, which drag him down, and he is caused a lot of suffering because of his actions towards others.

4.5. Suitors vs Athena (Man vs Nature/God)

4.5.1. The suitors are facing against Athena. Not Athena herself, but her will that Odysseus will avenge himself against them for harassing his wife and son.

4.6. Odysseus vs Ithaca (Man vs Society)

4.6.1. Odysseus may struggle to reclaim what is rightfully his, and his rights in the face of the public of Ithaca.

4.7. Penelope vs people of Ithaca (Man vs Society)

4.7.1. Penelope is struggling for her rights to choose her own husband in the face of the people of Ithaca, (mainly suitors) that she doesn't accept them.

5. Symbols

5.1. Food

5.1.1. Although food can be represented as hospitality, hunger and also the consumption of food typically have negative connections within the Odyssey. They represent lack of discipline, as once mythical being walks on within the cave of the Cyclops, once his men slaughter the Sun’s flocks, or after they eat the fruit of the lotus. The suitors are perpetually feeding. Whenever Telemachus and Penelope complain regarding their uninvited guests, they mention however the suitors slaughter the palace’s placental mammal. mythical being kills the suitors even as they're beginning their dinner, and In these cases, excessive feeding represents not simply lack of self-control, however additionally the whole absence of humanity and civility.

5.2. Female and Male Stereotypes (Entire Book)

5.2.1. Throughout the Odyssey, we are shown instances where men are considered superior to women, in this case, it's marriage and loyalty. Odysseus sleeps around with women such as Circe and Calypso without his wife knowing of it. Penelope on the other hand, is struggling with all the suitors in her palace that are trying to marry her. She does a lot to stay loyal and faithful to Odysseus, even when everyone presumes he is dead.

5.3. Islands (Entire Book)

5.3.1. To me, islands are a big representation of people and their personalities in the Odyssey. Every island brings you different people and different ways of treatment. Each one is different in it's own way, and to me this shows the different messages each island shows in its portrayal of its people. One may have a lustrous nymph, while one may have a cruel king. One may have an angry cyclops, while one may have a welcoming king. Each island brings up a different path in the outcome of what happens next in the jouney.

6. Key

6.1. Book 1

6.2. Book 5

6.3. Book 8

6.4. Book 9

6.5. Book 10

6.6. Book 16

6.7. Book 18

6.8. Book 20

6.9. Book 21

6.10. Book 22