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Viktor Frankls Mans Search for Meaning to interpret Homer’s Illiad

Frankls book explores what he calls the tragic triad of life: 1) pain, 2) guilt, and 3) death, and the existential problems they create for human beings. Frankl addresses those problems from a psychoanalytic and philosophical perspective grounded in his life story and in modern history. Many of the authors we are reading–particularly, Homer, Sophocles, and the Job author–address those same problems from an imaginative, literary, or even theological perspective, and of course, from the perspective of a much earlier era.

Your job in this term paper will be to use Frankls ideas as a framework for interpreting either Homers Iliad, Sophocles Oedipus Rex, or The Book of Job. In other words, use this paper to put Frankls modern ideas into conversation with those found in one of the aforementioned ancient texts. There are many ways to go about this assignment and no single right way. You might begin by asking if the ancient text youve chosen affirms or challenges some or all of Frankls views. Or you might isolate one of the problems in Frankls tragic triad and examine how an ancient authors treatment of it compares to Frankls, being alert to subtle differences as well as similarities.

Whatever your approach, the ancient text should be the focus of your paper, and you must develop an interpretive argument based on close reading of the ancient text, illustrating your argument through quotations and analysis drawn selectively from both texts. Your paper should be 1500-2000 words, not counting quoted text. It should be documented according to MLA style. And, above all, it should be a rich opportunity for inspiring you to ponder your own philosophy of life.