An odyssey a father a son and an epic review

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an odyssey a father a son and an epic review

An Odyssey: A Father, a Son, and an Epic by Daniel Mendelsohn

When eighty-one-year-old Jay Mendelsohn decides to enroll in the undergraduate Odyssey seminar his son teaches at Bard College, the two find themselves on an adventure as profoundly emotional as it is intellectual. For Jay, a retired research scientist this return to the classroom is his one last chance to learn the great literature hed neglected in his youth--and, even more, a final opportunity to more fully understand his son, a writer and classicist. But through the sometimes uncomfortable months that the two men explore Homers great work together--first in the classroom, where Jay persistently challenges his sons interpretations, and then during a surprise-filled Mediterranean journey retracing Odysseuss famous voyages--it becomes clear that Daniel has much to learn, too: Jays responses to both the text and the travels gradually uncover long-buried secrets that allow the son to understand his difficult father at last.
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An Odyssey book. Read reviews from the world's largest community for readers. When eighty-one-year-old Jay Mendelsohn decides to enroll in the underg.
Daniel Mendelsohn

An Odyssey: A Father, a Son, and an Epic review – a neat melding of family memoir and Homer

When eighty-one-year-old Jay Mendelsohn decides to enroll in the undergraduate Odyssey seminar his son teaches at Bard College, the two find themselves on an adventure as profoundly emotional as it is intellectual. Mendelsohn weaves his basket with many wands; the complexity seems natural, an account of the quality of life itself, a route to revelation. Mendelsohn explicates the Odyssey with exemplary and generous clarity. The fault-lines mapped in the disagreements of father and son correspond to some of the most fascinating interpretative questions of The Odyssey itself. Mendelsohn is a perceptive literary critic and a self-consciously elegant writer.

Daniel Mendelsohn is a classics scholar, a translator, a memoirist and a quick-witted literary and television critic. Jay lives on Long Island. He can be vinegary. He strode across the stateroom to the balcony and looked forlornly down as the shirt, which on contact with the water had taken on a dense animal gleam, like the skin of a seal, briefly bobbed along until it finally sank under its own weight. What catches you off guard about this memoir is how moving it is. Father and son decide to take the cruise shortly after the completion of the seminar at Bard.

D aniel Mendelsohn is an American academic and critic known for his lofty broadsides against the prevailing cultural consensus. Mendelsohn the stern critic is absent from these pages.
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