I was thinking about what makes a hero in myths and what is so interesting to me is how although figures like Oedipus, Hercules are all considered heroes, much of what they do in stories is the complete opposite of what modern society would consider a hero. Oedipus kills his father to marry his mother meanwhile Hercules kills both his wife and his children.

It’s an interesting perspective when comparing these heroes to heroes we talk about today. We do not perceive murderers as heroes to look up to. Instead we are horrified by such act of violence. So if myths are passed on generation to generation, how is it that our society has changed such views of heroism? What is it about these ancient heroes that gives them such a title?


One thought on “Heroes of myth

  1. I think it depends on context and the situation because to me, we are just as accepting of murderous acts. in real life we classify men in the army as “heroes” where they are trained to essentially kill. That is not to say that these men don’t work hard and should not be respected. but more they in a sense are still killing other people, which is usually how we define murderers. But within stories today, we tend to overlook such acts depending if we like, sympathize or find the character attractive in some way. for example, the hunger games (since it’s such a big deal right now), most people want katniss to win. in order to do so she must kill others. In harry potter we want harry to defeat voldemort, harry has to kill him. we still accept these murderous acts. it’s just we have changed our views on what we consider to be morally right murder. in any society, as long as the murder fits into what that culture believes to be morally right, then it will be.

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