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Odysseus’ Bed: Between Object and Action

Abstract : Although the central quality of Odysseus’ rooted bed is clear, much about its nature as an object is left obscure in the telling. This article analyses Odysseus’ account of the making of his bed (Odyssey, 23.183-204) as an example of a detailed narrative of making (ekphrasis tropou) rather than as a description of an object. It argues that the passage derives its meaning from its presentation as a first-person narration and from the actions related. For Penelope, the internal audience, the speech makes present the younger Odysseus, as the older Odysseus reperforms his creative gestures, while the vocabulary used allows the external audience to see in Odysseus’ account a summary of his marriage and adventures.
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Contributor : Agnès Tapin <>
Submitted on : Monday, April 29, 2019 - 10:25:25 AM
Last modification on : Tuesday, November 3, 2020 - 9:54:03 AM




Ruth Webb. Odysseus’ Bed: Between Object and Action. Mètis - Anthropologie des mondes grecs anciens, Daedalus/EHESS, 2018, Dossier : Place aux objets ! Présentification et vie des artefacts en Grèce ancienne, N.S.16, pp.65-83. ⟨10.4000/books.editionsehess.5658⟩. ⟨halshs-02113745⟩



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