The Odyssey of Homer : between translations and receptions

« Ἄνδρα μοι ἔννεπε, μοῦσα, πολύτροπον, ὃς μάλα πολλὰ
πλάγχθη, ἐπεὶ Τροίης ἱερὸν πτολίεθρον ἔπερσεν· »

« Tell me, Muse, of the man of many ways, who driven far journeys, after he had sacked Troy’s sacred citadel »

For my project, I choose to talk about a classic and timeless literary work : The Odyssey. 

 

The Odyssey is one of the most important works of literature and, with the Iliad, makes the Greek culture.

My project consists first of all of studying as many translations of the work as possible. Like any project, this topic raises questions such as : why does this country have a translation of the Odyssey and not that one ? Of course, it is not possible to find all the answers, but asking questions is already a step forward in the project.

Here you can see a map created to show the main translators of The Odyssey with the date and a portrait of the writer. Important figures such as Chapman can be seen on it. This map is not definitive and will evolve as the project progresses. I have also indicated Homer and his supposed birthplace because I believe it is important to point out that he is at the origin of all of this works, culture and adventures (even if there are many theories about his existence).

 

Secondly, we will analyse the influence of the Odyssey in more details by looking at the works created from it. These reception works can also be put on a map to show the diversity. It will be difficult to find all the works created from The Odyssey, but we will try to include the most important. Indeed, we can find comics, plays, podcasts… Of course, we will limit ourselves here to books and those that have a concrete relation with the work of Homer.

I choose this project topic because I studied Classics, so I learned some of the Greek culture and other authors such as Eschyle, Sophocle or Aristophane for example, but I think that Homer’s works (The Iliad and The Odyssey) represent a basis of literature. So it’s a subject that seems interesting to me to deal with.

To begin this project, it was first useful to proofread The Odyssey to identify all the characters. This allows us to find works that are inspired by the epic poem but more specifically by a particular character. Then we had to do some research to find authors who could have translated The Odyssey. The aim is to find diverse translations, in multiple countries. The second research task was to find books inspired by the work, by a character or by rewriting.

As can be seen, the project is not yet very advanced. The aim will be to expand the bibliography considerably in the future. Additional translators will also need to be found to put on the map. The purpose of this project, as mentioned above, is to make one or two maps showing the two aspects we have discussed. I think that two maps will be useful so as not to confuse the two works. Thus looking at the two finished maps, we can hopefully contemplate the diversity of countries and the different periods that have worked on The Odyssey. It seems fairly obvious that the map representing the derivate works will be more vast.

This project could also offer a database that could show and classify the different works found during our research.

Here is a bibliography of books/articles that I have used and/or would use

Bibliography :

HOMÈRE DANS LE MOYEN AGE OCCIDENTAL
Mis de Queux de Saint-Hilaire, „HOMÈRE DANS LE MOYEN AGE OCCIDENTAL“, in: Annuaire de l’Association pour l’encouragement des études grecques en France 14 (1880) S. 80–98. Online: <https://www.jstor.org/stable/44253518>, Stand: 28.03.2021.
Bibliothèque Numérique TV5MONDE - Les Aventures de Télémaque
TV5MONDE, Bibliothèque Numérique TV5MONDE - Les Aventures de Télémaque, o. D. Online: <https://bibliothequenumerique.tv5monde.com/livre/40/Les-Aventures-de-Telemaque>, Stand: 28.03.2021.
Circé
Madeline Miller, Circé: roman, 2018.
The Odyssey, by Homer
The Odyssey, by Homer, <https://www.gutenberg.org/files/3160/3160-h/3160-h.htm#chap01>, Stand: 28.03.2021.
On First Looking Into Chapman’s Homer by John Keats
„On First Looking Into Chapman’s Homer by John Keats“, Scottish Poetry Library, <https://www.scottishpoetrylibrary.org.uk/poem/first-looking-chapmans-homer/>, Stand: 28.03.2021.
Lemaire de Belges, Homère Belgeois  Le mythe troyen à la Renaissance
Adeline Desbois-Ientile, Lemaire de Belges, Homère Belgeois  Le mythe troyen à la Renaissance (Bibliothèque de la Renaissance, 79), Paris 2019. Online: DOI: 10.15122/isbn.978-2-406-09057-1.
Omeros - Derek Walcott
„Omeros - Derek Walcott“, Babelio, <https://www.babelio.com/livres/Walcott-Omeros/247601>, Stand: 28.03.2021.
Ulysse - James Joyce
„Ulysse - James Joyce“, Babelio, <https://www.babelio.com/livres/Joyce-Ulysse/3475>, Stand: 28.03.2021.
Pratiques nautiques et cosmologie
Jean Cuisenier, „Pratiques nautiques et cosmologie : l’Odyssée d’Homère revisitée“, in: Ethnologie francaise Vol. 31/4 (2001) S. 725–739. Online: <https://www.cairn.info/revue-ethnologie-francaise-2001-4-page-725.htm>, Stand: 28.03.2021.
L’Homère de Salomon Certon
Christiane Deloince-Louette, „L’Homère de Salomon Certon : une traduction « protestante »“, in: Corpus Eve. Émergence du Vernaculaire en Europe (31.12.2015). Online: DOI: 10.4000/eve.1235.
« Ample transmigration »
Christine Sukic, „« Ample transmigration » : George Chapman, traducteur d’Homère en anglais“, in: Etudes anglaises Vol. 60/1 (01.08.2007) S. 3–14. Online: <https://www.cairn.info/revue-etudes-anglaises-2007-1-page-3.htm>, Stand: 28.03.2021.
Ulysse dans la culture italienne. Voyage multiforme à travers le temps
Brigitte Urbani, „Ulysse dans la culture italienne. Voyage multiforme à travers le temps“, in: Cahiers d’études romanes. Revue du CAER /27 (15.07.2013) S. 19–46. Online: DOI: 10.4000/etudesromanes.4017.
Homero abanderado. Il Ritorno d’Ulisse in Patria, las mujeres, el libertinaje y la defensa de la fe en la Venecia de la Edad Moderna
Silke Knippschild, Homero abanderado. Il Ritorno d’Ulisse in Patria, las mujeres, el libertinaje y la defensa de la fe en la Venecia de la Edad Moderna in, o. D., S. 24.
Homero en España. La Ulixea de Gonzalo Pérez
Andrea Baldissera, „Homero en España. La Ulixea de Gonzalo Pérez“, in: Corpus Eve. Émergence du Vernaculaire en Europe (31.12.2015). Online: DOI: 10.4000/eve.1250.
BnF - Homère, Iliade, Odyssée, Ulysse, Troie
BnF - Homère, Iliade, Odyssée, Ulysse, Troie, <http://expositions.bnf.fr/homere/arret/05.htm>, Stand: 28.03.2021.