Analysis Of The Poem ' The Odyssey ' Essay

823 Words Apr 11th, 2016 4 Pages
Here in the south we take kindness to a level most others don’t. So far, in fact, that we tend to be kinder to those we don’t know more often than those we do. Jaye Wells once said, “Of course Cher, a proper southern woman never allows a simple misunderstanding to get in the way of proper hospitality." In The Odyssey Homer explains the importance and gives several examples of proper hospitality, also known as “xenia” to the Greeks. Given that xenia is the Greek word meaning “guest-friendship,” or hospitality we often first think of it as being someone with manners and knows the importance of being polite, “a good host.” However, xenia is more than just being polite to guest. It is a set of rules that are expected to be upheld by a guest-host relationship between two individuals. Rules of this relationship were that the guest should not insult the host, demand for things, or refuse the xenia being offered. In return, the host should welcome the guest, feed and clothe him, and protect him. He must do these things before bothering asking the guest his name and his business at another’s home. He should exemplify the upmost level of kindess and sometimes even a gift exchange would be expected. This allowed for there to be expectations of both the host and the guest, so neither felt awkward or burdened. Homer gives us many examples of xenia, good and bad, throughout the Odyssey. One of the very best examples of xenia presented in The Odyssey is shown by Nausikaa, princess of…

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