Compare and Contrast Essay on Hillenbrand and The Odyssey by Homer

  • Category: Literature, Poems,
  • Words: 628 Pages: 3
  • Published: 12 March 2021
  • Copied: 195

Compare and Contrast Essay on Hillenbrand and The Odyssey by Homer

Writings from completely different times and authors share more similarities and differences than one might think. Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand and The Odyssey by Homer both share similarities and differences. Unbroken is a nonfiction novel that follows the journey of Louie Zampereni during WWII. The Odyssey is a fictional poem that takes place around the year 700 B.C.E. It tells about the journey of Odysseus as he tries to make his way home. Cleverness is just as important as strength to Odysseus and Louie because it helped them defeat powerful enemies and escape tough situations even though they had different methods. 

The two writings both had powerful enemies the protagonist had to face. The enemies were different but they proved to be a problem for Louie and Odysseus. In Unbroken Louie was immensely outpowered and outnumbered by the Japanese. He was forced to rely on his wit and quick thinking in order to survive. The prison camp guards did whatever they could to strip the prisoners of their dignity. In The Odyssey one of Odysseus’s enemies is a cyclops. Odysseus had to find a way to escape the cyclops before all his men were killed. Both of the protagonists' enemies proved how powerful they are compared to them. Despite the different scenarios boht Louie and Odysseus had strong enemies. Even though they were overpowered, Louie and Odysseus found clever ways to overcome and defeat their enemies without the use of physical strength. 

Louie and Odysseus always found themselves in a tough situation. In unbroken Louie ran into the problem of being stranded at sea. He ended up being lost at sea for 47 days. “No knife, nothing for shelter, no fishnet, no radio.” (Hillenbrand 104) Odysseus has the problem of a long journey home. “Should destiny intend that he shall see his roof again among his family in his fatherland, far be that day, and dark the years in between.” It was ten years before Odysseus returned home. Louie and Odysseus both faced the problem of a long journey at sea, not exactly sure where they would end up. In order to survive the journey, the protagonists came up with clever ideas in order to survive. Louie used an albatross bird as bait in order to catch fish. Odysseus came up with a brilliant plan to escape the cyclops. Louie and Odysseus’ intelligence aided them in their survival.

Even though they were able to defeat powerful enemies and escape tough situations they had different methods and circumstances. Louie had less time to act than Odysseus did. He often had to think on the spot and act quick. Louie’s plans also used less physical force. When a japanese fighter was firing at Louie he acted quick and dived in the water, but he never confronted the pilot. “As Louie turned to dive in the water, Phil and Mac didn’t move.” (Hillenbrand) If Louie had not acted quickly he could have very easily been killed. Odysseus had more time to think about the situation he was in and his plans involved more physical force. With The cyclops, Odysseus had enough time to come up with the plan of stabbing the cyclops' eye and tying his men to the cyclops’ goats. “Three abreast I tied them silently together, twining cords of willow from the ogre’s bed; then slung a man under each middle one to ride there safely, shielded left and right.” (Homer) This would have taken quite a bit of time and his plan included physical force when he stabbed the cyclops’ eye. Despite this difference, both protagonists were still able to overcome their obstacle.

In conclusion, Louie’s and Odysseus’s cleverness helped save their lives. Without this cleverness they would not have survived this journey. Physical strength would not have helped solve all their problems. They heavily relied on their wit to survive their journey. Cleverness is just as important as strength to Odysseus and Louie because it helped them defeat powerful enemies and escape tough situations even though they had different methods. 

 

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