The paper (3-5 pages long) is due Mon., Oct. 18, in class.
The below topics are suggestions. If you want to write on another topic, feel free to do so. It might be a good idea, however, in that case, to check with one of us first.
The intent of the paper is to discuss the views or attitudes of Homer and/or his characters, rather than your own opinions on a certain topic. Of course you can't and shouldn't completely keep your own opinions out of it, but your argument as a whole should aim at establishing something about what Homer and/or his characters mean. Your thesis should be your own, original idea about that.
(In particular, this means your argument should not mainly aim at showing that Homer and/or his characters are good or bad or right or wrong. Before you could ever decide that you would have to figure out what they actually think and how they actually act, which is what this paper should be about.)
Since the main point of the papers is to help you think carefully and in detail about the material, it is important to find specific, relevant pieces of text which support your point(s). (Refer to the Iliad by book and line numbers--give full bibliographical references only if you for some reason bring in an outside source.)
It is not necessary to quote the text you cite, unless the specific wording is important to your point.
(Grading criteria: the best thing you can do is have an interesting and surprising idea. If you have such an idea, structure your paper around it, don't save it for the last paragraph! It is also important to show a careful engagement with the texts, however: you can easily get an A even though we think your conclusions are wrong, but you will be graded down if we think your reading is careless. Finally, it is also important, though not as important, to have a coherent and well-structured argument. I encourage you to proofread carefully, but typographical errors, spelling, grammar, etc., will not affect your grade.)