Achilles


The act of revenge has taken its toll on Achilles. He is ‘a mess in his hut’ [pg 167] and only interacts with those around him when necessary. Even when he makes an appearance at dinner, he ‘sits apart’ from his comrades, highlighting his sense of isolation. The description of the Greeks’ lifestyle as noisy and playful while feasting highlights the importance of this part of their culture. However, Achilles must ‘force’ [pg 170] himself to eat and ‘sits with a full cup of wine before him’ [pg 168]. The wine symbolises power during Ancient Greek times and demonstrates that Achilles’ is no longer “powerful” like his Myrmidons who drink plenty of wine, but weak from the burden of his guilt and suffering. In another reference to Christianity, the red wine is also a representation of redemption, as Jesus sacrificed himself after the last supper. It is now “sitting before” Achilles, waiting for him to free himself from his misery and begin his path to absolution.  

In your own words explain why Achilles’ life is in a state of turmoil and suggest how he may be able to change?
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3 thoughts on “Achilles

  1. Achilles is the Greeks greatest warrior. He plays an important role in the Trojan War, and the Greeks might not win the war without him. His life is in a state of turmoil because there are a lot of things, both positive and negative, happened around him. He has got all the glory from wars and his country and he is a demigod. However, he can’t change the fact that he is going to die and he can’t save his best friend. Even though he has taken the revenge, he is still in the state of turmoil, because killing Hector doesn’t make him feel better. He suffers in this state because of being a warrior and famous. However, if Achilles chooses to be an ordinary man and live with a simple lifestyle, like Somax, he won’t be suffering in the turmoil.

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  2. Achilles's life is in a turmoil as he doesn't actually have a goal in his life. He is similar with Priam,which both of them do not have the real freedom. Although Achilles is powerful,he losses the people who are important to him since childhood. When Pactorclous dies, his soul changes colour,all his sadnedd turns into revenge. His whole life doesn't have pattens as many accidents occur to him that hurt him. He then isolate himself to cover his emotions. He can not open his heart to others anymore because he thinks that everyone in his life has gone and left him alone.
    However, when Priam comes to ransom Hector in the role of father, Ahilles changes because he is also a father of someone,he finds peace and the turmoil in his life turns a bit calm. Actually he has already changed when he returns the body to Priam,but thats too late as life is a cycle,all of them need to move on and regret can not help to reverse life.

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  3. Achilles' life has been a total mess as the gods seem to have made a joke of his life throughout the novel. The warrior struggled to obtain peace even when his soul mate Patroclus was alive. He was arrogant, selfish, and inconsiderate for his homeland judging by his unwillingness to fight in the Trojan war. His soul changing colour and the insane treatment of Hector's body were merely different demonstrations of the lack of peace in the individual. However, after all the pain and suffer Achilles has gone through due to the guilt obtained through the death of Patroclus, the gods seem to feel they might as well give Achilles a bit peace back in exchange for the suffer, through the visit of Priam. Well ironically the price Achilles paid for peace was his own life. To conclude, Achilles' life was a joke made by the gods. Of course the conclusion is made under my personal opinion:)

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