Homer’s Odyssey, Books I-XII: The Long Way Home


I.                    Telemakhos’ Journey and the Consequences of War

A.     Beginning in the Middle

B.     A Son’s Quest

C.     The Restoration of Order

II.                 Visits Abroad: Nestor in Pylos; Menelaos and Helen in Mycenae

A.     Nestor’s Wisdom

B.     Helen Drugs the Wine

C.     The Suitors Plot Telemakhos’ Death

III.               Kalypso’s Care and Nausikaa’s Welcome

A.     Why go home?

B.     Washing Up on Shore

C.     Nausikaa Greets the Stranger

IV.              The Honored Guest and the Harper’s Songs

A.     Alkinoos, Calm in Power

B.     Books VII and VIII: Odysseus in Disguise

C.     Odysseus and the Harper

V.                 The Dangers of Eating: Book IX

A.     Kikones

B.     Lotos-Eaters

C.     The Cyclops and the Man of Many Turns

VI.              More Tales of Disaster

A.     The King of the Winds and the Laistrygonians

B.     Kirke’s Island and Hermes’ Warning

VII.            The Journey to the Underworld: Book XI

A.     Shades and Death

B.     Heroes, Relatives, Friends, and Myths

C.     Death and Literary Knowledge

VIII.         The Song of the Sirens

A.     The Danger in Song

B.     Tales of Heroism

C.     Longing and Duty

IX.      More Dangers at Sea

A.     Skylla and Charybdis

B.     The Oxen of the Sun

C.     The Destruction of the Ships

X.                 Father and Son Reunited

A.     O My Swineherd!

B.     Athena on Ithaka

C.     Plans and Plots

XI.               Odysseus’ Scar

A.     Recognition and Narrative

B.     The Scars of Experience

C.     Auerbach’s Essay

XII.              The Harp and the Bow

A.     The Hero as Singer

B.     Hitting the Mark

C.     Slaughter in the House

XIII.                 Penelope’s Test

A.     Roots and Recognition

B.     History and Belonging

C.     A Woman in Charge

XIV.              Appeasing the Gods and Making Peace

A.     The Oar and the Fan

B.     The Shades of the Suitors

C.     Athena Interves