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Homer and the art of overtaking

Abstract

This article draws attention to the thematics of running in Homer, seeking to make sense of the difference between catching up and overtaking as it applies to the two epics. It begins by exploring how the Iliad foregrounds the problems and strategies involved in catching up with one's opponent and getting ahead. It then goes on to show how, by contrast, the Odyssey presents a world where the act of overtaking and the alternation between the categories of first and last are of central concern to Odysseus on his way home in Books 8 and 9. © 2011 by The Johns Hopkins University Press.

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