Analysis of Cavafy's Poem "Ithaka"

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Cavafy's "Ithaka" and its Reflection of Life

Cavafy's "Ithaka" reflects Homer's narration regarding Odysseus's journey back home. However, an analysis of the poem above indicates that Cavafy is referring to the life that people live. Specifically, "Ithaka" is the journey of life which majorly constitutes challenges and opportunities that individuals encounter in their daily affairs. Through Cavafy's poem, it is evident that the events which occur in people's lives are critical in enhancing their comprehension of the world and people inhabiting it. For instance, persona advises Poseidon to acquire skills from the 'scholars' (Cavafy 24). The statement above depicts that it is necessary for people to learn from knowledgeable individuals to properly handle the various problems that they encounter.

The Importance of Ethics in "Ithaka"

The poem by Cavafy is also critical in urging readers to be ethical in the various activities they undertake to enable them to have a successful and fulfilling life. Through morality, one can avoid the various unnecessary actions that can lead to death or failure to achieve a set of goals that an individual had established. As a way of being ethical in life, it is critical not to rush the various activities which humans do to attain their goals without considering the repercussions of such actions. For instance, persona says that it is prudent not to hurry the journey (Cavafy 27). The essence of avoiding unnecessary rush in one's life is to enable an individual to explore all the opportunities in the surrounding before a person dies. Specifically, by being systematic in the journey of life, one gets a chance to discover new places and enjoy the best products that are available.

Applying Albert Bandura's Social Cognitive Theory to "Ithaka"

One can also explain "Ithaka" by applying concepts of Albert Bandura's social cognitive theory which postulates that observation, self-efficacy, situational influences, and self-efficacy are pivotal in the course of learning. Notably, in life, one needs to interact with other people and observe their social practices to acquire knowledge. On the other hand, cognitive development plays a critical role in a proper manipulation of ideas that individuals gain through observation while self-efficacy is essential in motivating individuals to work towards the fulfillment of their aspirations. For instance, through "Ithaka", Cavafy shows that interactions with other people and exploration of new places are pivotal in making one acquire substantial knowledge which will enable them to live for an extended period thus attaining their goals. Situational influences also play a pivotal role in aiding individuals acquire knowledge which will help them have a successful life. In particular, persona in the poem above argues that without Ithaka the addressee would not have set out thus an implication that it is through a circumstance (journey) that the audience acquired different experience.

Personal Experience and the Impact of "Ithaka"

This poem was recommended to me during the adolescence training session whereby the counselors advised me to be cautious in the activities I undertake. Through the training, I learned that it is necessary to be moral to attain my goals in life. By being steadfast, individuals do not rush properly plan their activities thus attain their objectives, which is majorly recommended in "Ithaka".

Work cited

Covafy, P. Constantine. “Ithaka.” Poetry Foundation, n.d. Web. 21 Nov. 2018


November 24, 2023

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