The story of Odysseus' adventures finally begin in Book IX. From Book IX to Book XII are basically all of the flash backs of Odysseus as he tells a story to the Phaecians about his past experiences during this long journey. I believe this gives a good background, not only towards Odysseus' audience but to himself as well. Several times throughout the book, it shows how Odysseus' companions will get into trouble because of their greed. Nonetheless, this Book represents, just like many other Books, how greed and hunger can give a negative impact. At the same time it also shows how mental ability can over power physical strength.
The Cyclops, live without the benefit of laws, cities or agriculture and are completely opposite from civilized men. This means that they are different in they"re way of life. The Cyclops are quite barbaric and don't eat at a table like humans, they live in caves rather than built shelters, and humans would never eat they"re guests (except for Hanibal Lector or some other crazy exceptions). Odysseus is quite irritated by they"re way of life because, 120-21: "Kyklopes have no muster and no meeting, no consultation or old tribal ways." In other words, they don't take advantage of they"re beautiful land full of "fruit" and "grain." .
Again, Rather than welcoming strangers, they eat them. They also mock the power of both men and gods. Odysseus' encounter with Polyphemos shows conflict between man and nature. Odysseus is able to trick the Cyclops through his cleverness, but he is punished by Poseidon later on. When we talk about greed, both Odysseus and Polyphemos are guilty. Odysseus and his men freely wander into the cave and look for food. They also expect gifts from the host, which turns out to be the Cyclops. In return, Polyphemos eats one of his men. Then he is offered wine from Odysseus and this is where Odysseus' mental ability starts to take place. 391-392: "Three bowls brought him, and he poured them down.