Scholars of James Joyce offer critical analysis of his work Ulysses. Five essays interpret the character of the novel; four deal with the literary style of presentation, the last focuses on the problems of translation.
Contributors: Robert R. Boyle, S.J.; David Hayman; Richard M. Kain; Darcy O’Brien; Weldon Thornton; Erwin R. Steinberg; William M. Schutte; Fritz Senn; H. Frew Waidner; and the editors.
The condition of our public discussions about literary and cultural works has much to say about the condition of our democracy and the author argues for more public discourse--in classrooms, newspapers, magazines, etc. to reclaim a public voice on national artistic matters.
In this revealing study of the links among literature, rhetoric, and democracy, Rosa A. Eberly explores the public debate generated by amateur and professional readers about four controversial literary works: two that were censored in the United States and two that created conflict because they were not censored.
In Citizen Critics Eberly compares the outrage sparked by the publication of James Joyce's Ulysses and Henry Miller's Tropic of Cancer with the relative quiescence that greeted the much more violent and sexually explicit content of Bret Easton Ellis's American Psychoand Andrea Dworkin's Mercy. Through a close reading of letters to the editor, reviews, media coverage, and court cases, Eberly shows how literary critics and legal experts defused censorship debates by shifting the focus from content to aesthetics and from social values to publicity. By asserting their authority to pass judgments--thus denying the authority of citizen critics--these professionals effectively removed the discussion from literary public spheres.
A passionate advocate for treating reading as a public and rhetorical enterprise rather than solely as a private one, Eberly suggests the potential impact a work of literature may have on the social polity if it is brought into public forums for debate rather than removed to the exclusive rooms of literary criticism. Eberly urges educators to use their classrooms as protopublic spaces in which students can learn to make the transition from private reader to public citizen.
"Polhemus sketches several distinctions between nineteenth- and twentieth-century novelists and concludes that what most characterizes the nineteenth century, from the perspective of the twentieth, is the tendency in its comic fiction to criticize and to undermine the dogma and institutions of religion and to put faith instead of the existence of the comic perspective. Comic Faith is a virtuoso performance of impressive stature; I suspect the book will be influential for many years to come."—John Halperin, Modern Fiction Studies
Approaching the study of literature as a unique form of the philosophy of language and mind--as a study of how we produce nonsense and imagine it as sense--this is a book about our human ways of making and losing meaning. Brett Bourbon asserts that our complex and variable relation with language defines a domain of meaning and being that is misconstrued and missed in philosophy, in literary studies, and in our ordinary understanding of what we are and how things make sense. Accordingly, his book seeks to demonstrate how the study of literature gives us the means to understand this relationship.
The book itself is framed by the literary and philosophical challenges presented by Joyce's Finnegan's Wake and Wittgenstein's Philosophical Investigations. With reference to these books and the problems of interpretation and meaning that they pose, Bourbon makes a case for the fundamental philosophical character of the study of literature, and for its dependence on theories of meaning disguised as theories of mind. Within this context, he provides original accounts of what sentences, fictions, non-fictions, and poems are; produces a new account of the logical form of fiction and of the limits of interpretation that follow from it; and delineates a new and fruitful domain of inquiry in which literature, philosophy, and science intersect.
Table of Contents:
Preface Note on Abbreviations
Introduction: What Are We When We Are Not?
Part I The Surface of Language and the Absence of Meaning 1. From Soul-Making to Person-Making 2. The Logical Form of Fiction 3. The Emptiness of Literary Interpretation 4. To Be But Not To Mean 5. How Do Oracles Mean?
Part II Senses and Nonsenses: Joyce's Finnegans Wake and Wittgenstein's Philosophical Investigations 6. A Twitterlitter of Nonsense: Askesis at Finnegans Wake 7. The Analogy between Persons and Words 8. "The Human Body Is the Best Picture of the Human Soul" 9. The Senses of Time 10. Being Something and Meaning Something
Bibliography Acknowledgments Index
This is an adventurous and unusual book. Bourbon moves back and forth between literary and philosophical contexts with ease, showing in multifarious ways how the one can, often in unexpected ways, illuminate the other. Throughout these wide-ranging explorations Bourbon uncovers a good deal about both the nature of literary meaning and our distinctive -- if tellingly irreducible -- relations to literary texts. --Garry L. Hagberg, author of Art as Language: Wittgenstein, Meaning, and Aesthetic Theory and Meaning and Interpretation: Wittgenstein, Henry James, and Literary Knowledge
All of us remember our First Love. In this brilliant and often passionate book, Maria DiBattista shows that the yearning for the freshness of First Love, and the sadness of that yearning, are central to modern literature. DiBattista offers a sweeping and wholly original reinterpretation of modern fiction, allowing us to see the romantic affections that lie behind the seemingly most ironic of modernist texts.
DiBattista argues that modernity reinvented First Love as a myth of creative initiative, as its characteristic response to a pervasive sense of historical belatedness. Anxious that its own creations can never be more than diminished forms of mightier originals, modernity idolizes First Love as the beginning that can never be repeated. First Love hence epitomizes the dream of a new self-incarnation. From Turgenev's First Love to the formative works of Virginia Woolf, Gertrude Stein, E. M. Forster, and Vladimir Nabokov, First Love confirms the birth of an artistic vocation. For modern men and women intent on becoming the original authors of their own lives, First Love becomes paradigmatic of those life-altering moments that transform the undifferentiated sequence of days into a fateful narrative.
DiBattista focuses on the enunciation of First Love in the fiction of Thomas Hardy, D. H. Lawrence, James Joyce, and Samuel Beckett. In reading their works, DiBattista dramatically revises the accepted view of irony as the dominant tone of modernism. First Love constitutes, she shows, a new apprehension of the world characterized not by the frigid distances of irony but by a belief in the creative individual who may begin the world anew, as if for the first time.
A Ghost in Trieste
Joseph Cary University of Chicago Press, 1993 Library of Congress DG975.T825C37 1993 | Dewey Decimal 914.539304929
Gem of the Adriatic, Trieste sparkled and beckoned through the pages of poets and novelists. Drawn there in search of literary ghosts, of the poet Umberto Saba and the novelists Italo Svevo and James Joyce, Joseph Cary found instead a city with an imaginative life of its own, the one that rises, tantalizing from the pages of this book. The story of Cary's travels, A Ghost in Trieste, is also a tale of discovery and transformation, as the bustling world of port and airplane, baggage and trams and trains becomes the landscape of history and literature, language and art, psychoanalysis and the self.
Here is the crossroads of East and West. A port held in turn by the Romans, the Venetians, the Austrians, the Germans, the Slavs, and finally the Italians, Trieste is the capital of nowhere, fertile source of a unique literary florescence before the First World War. At times an exile home and an exiled city. "I cannot claim to have walked across it all,:" wrote Saba, the poet of Trieste in 1910 of the city Cary crosses and recrosses, seeking the poetry of the place that inspired its literary giants. Trieste's cultural and historical riches, its geographical splendor of hills and sea and mysterious presence unfold in a series of stories, monologues and literary juxtapositions that reveal the city's charms as well as its seductive hold on the writer's imagination. Throughout, literary and immediate impressions alike are elaborated in paintings and maps, and in handsome line drawings by Nicholas Read.
This "clownish and adolescent Parsifal," this Trieste of the "prickly grace," this place "impaled in my heart like a permanent point," this symbol of the Adriatic, this "city made of books" — here the book remakes the city. The Trieste of allusions magically becomes a city of palpable allure, of warmth and trying contradictions and gritty beauty. Part travel diary, part guide book, part literary history, A Ghost in Trieste is a brilliant introduction to an extraordinary time and place. In Joseph Cary, Trieste has found a new poet, and readers, a remarkably captivating companion and guide.
The assumptions that literary criticism and philosophy are closely linked—and that both disciplines can learn much from each other—lead David White to examine key passages in James Joyce’s novels both as a philosopher and as literary critic. In so doing, he develops a thesis that Joyce’s attempt to capture the mysterious process whereby perception and consciousness are translated into language entails a fundamental challenge to everyday notions of reality. Joyce’s stylistic brilliance and virtuosity, his destruction of normal syntax and meaning, “shock one into a new reality.” In the book’s final section, White examines the subtle relation between literary language and human consciousness and traces parallels between Joyce’s stylistic experimentation and Wittgenstein’s and Husserl’s ideas about language.
In this landmark study of James Joyce’s Finnegans Wake, Luca Crispi and Sam Slote have brought together fourteen other leading Joyce experts in a genetic guide to one of the twentieth century’s most intriguing works of fiction. Each essay approaches Finnegans Wake through novel perspectives afforded by Joyce’s preparatory manuscripts. By investigating a work through its manuscripts, genetic criticism both grounds speculative interpretations in an historical, material context and opens up a broader horizon for critical and textual interpretation.
The introduction by Luca Crispi, Sam Slote, and Dirk Van Hulle offers a chronology of the composition of Finnegans Wake, an archival survey of the manuscripts, and an introduction to genetic criticism. Then, the volume provides a chapter-by-chapter interpretation of Finnegans Wake from a variety of perspectives, probing the book as a work in progress. The fruit of more than two decades’ worth of Wakean genetic studies, this book is the essential starting point for all future studies of Joyce’s most complex and fascinating work.
Author E. Joseph Sharkey uses the philosophies of language of Hans-Georg Gadamer and Ludwig Wittgenstein to counter the skepticism in question by showing that a language grounded in history instead of the transcendent is grounded nevertheless.
For nearly three quarters of a century, the modernist way of reading has been the only way of reading James Joyce—useful, yes, and powerful but, like all frameworks, limited. This book takes a leap across those limits into postmodernism, where the pleasures and possibilities of an unsuspected Joyce are yet to be found.
Kevin J. H. Dettmar begins by articulating a stylistics of postmodernism drawn from the key texts of Roland Barthes, Mikhail Bakhtin, and Jean-François Lyotard. Read within this framework, Dubliners emerges from behind its modernist facade as the earliest product of Joyce’s proto-postmodernist sensibility. Dettmar exposes these stories as tales of mystery, not mastery, despite the modernist earmarks of plentiful symbols, allusions, and epiphanies. Ulysses, too, has been inadequately served by modernist critics. Where they have emphasized the work’s ingenious Homeric structure, Dettmar focuses instead upon its seams, those points at which the narrative willfully, joyfully overflows its self-imposed bounds. Finally, he reads A Portrait of the Artist and Finnegans Wake as less playful, less daring texts—the first constrained by the precious, would-be poet at its center, the last marking a surprising retreat from the constantly evolving, vertiginous experience of Ulysses.
In short, The Illicit Joyce of Postmodernism explores what happens when the extra-literary pronouncements of Eliot, Pound, and Joyce, as well as Joyce’s early critics, are set aside and a new, “unauthorized” Joyce is allowed to appear. This postmodern Joyce, more willful and less easily compartmentalized, stands as a counterpoint to the modernist Joyce who has perhaps become too familiar.
From Ulysses to Finnegans Wake, James Joyce’s writings rank among the most intimidating works of literature. Unfortunately, many of the books that purport to explain Joyce are equally difficult. The Critical Lives series comes to the rescue with this concise yet deep examination of Joyce’s life and literary accomplishments, an examination that centers on Joyce’s mythical and actual Ireland as the true nucleus of his work.
Andrew Gibson argues here that the most important elements in Joyce’s novels are historically material and specific to Ireland—not, as is assumed, broadly modernist. Taking Joyce “local,” Gibson highlights the historical and political traditions within Joyce’s family and upbringing and then makes the case that Ireland must play a primary role in the study of Joyce. The fall of Charles Stewart Parnell, the collapse of political hope after the Irish nationalist upheavals, the early twentieth-century shift by Irish public activists from political to cultural concerns—all are crucial to Joyce’s literary evolution. Even the author’s move to mainland Europe, asserts Gibson, was actually the continuation of a centuries-old Irish legacy of emigration rather than an abandonment of his native land.
In the thousands, perhaps millions, of words written about Joyce, Ireland often takes a back seat to his formal experimentalism and the modernist project as a whole. Yet here Gibson challenges this conventional portrait of Joyce, demonstrating that the tightest focus—Joyce as an Irishman—yields the clearest picture.
James Joyce and the Philosophers at Finnegans Wake explores how Joyce used the philosophers Nicholas Cusanus, Giordano Bruno, and Giambattista Vico as the basis upon which to write Finnegans Wake. Very few Joyce critics know enough about these philosophers and therefore often miss their influence on Joyce's great work. Joyce embraces these philosophic companions to lead him through the underworld of history with all its repetitions and resurrections, oppositions and recombinations. We as philosophical readers of the Wake go along with them to meet everybody and in so doing are bound "to encounter for the millionth time the reality of experience and to forge in the smithy" of our souls the "uncreated conscience" of humankind. Verene builds his study on the basis of years of teaching Finnegans Wake side by side with Cusanus, Bruno, and Vico, and his book will serve as a guide to readers of Joyce's novel.
Literary studies of James Joyce, perhaps more so than those of any other author, have been enriched by important developments in literary theory in the last twenty-five years. Noting a curious gap in this scholarship, M. Keith Booker brings the work of Mikhail Bakhtin, unquestionably one of the most important literary theorists of this century, to bear on Joyce's relationship to six of his literary predecessors. In clear and readable prose, Booker explores Joyce's dialogues not only with Homer, Dante, and Shakespeare, his three most obvious predecessors, but with Rabelais, Goethe, and Dostoevsky, three literary figures important in Bakhtin's theoretical work.
These six writers provide the opportunity to examine Joyce's work with regard to several of Bakhtin's most important concepts. If Homer represents the authority of epic, Rabelais represents for Bakhtin the subversive multivocal energies of carnivalesque genres. As opposed to his description of Dante's attempts to escape from historicity, Bakhtin figures Goethe as the epitome of engagement with the temporality of everyday history. And Bakhtin's generic denial of polyphony in the works of Shakespeare contrasts with Bakhtin's identification of Dostoevsky as the most polyphonic writer in all the world of literature.
Together, Booker's comparative readings suggest a Joyce whose works are politically committed, historically engaged, and socially relevant. In short, they suggest a Joyce whose work differs radically from conventional notions of modernist literature as culturally elitist, historically detached, and more interested in individual psychology than in social reality.
M. Keith Booker is Professor of English, University of Arkansas.
Joyce, Chaos, and Complexity
Thomas Jackson Rice University of Illinois Press, 1997 Library of Congress PR6019.O9Z78455 1997 | Dewey Decimal 823.912
Thomas Rice compellingly argues that James Joyce's work resists postmodernist approaches of ambiguity: Joyce never abandoned his conviction that reality exists, regardless of the human ability to represent it.
Placing Joyce in his cultural context, Rice first traces the influence of Euclidean and non-Euclidean geometries on Dubliners and A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man. He then demonstrates that, when later innovations in science transformed entire worldviews, Joyce recognized conventional literary modes of representation as offering only arbitrary constructions of this reality. Joyce responded in Ulysses by experimenting with perspective, embedding design, and affirming the existence of reality. Rice contends that Ulysses presages the multiple tensions of chaos theory; likewise, chaos theory can serve as a model for understanding Ulysses. In Finnegans Wake Joyce consummates his vision and anticipates the theories of complexity science through a dynamic approximation of reality.
Sheds new light on James Joyce's use of sexual motifs as cultural raw material for Ulysses and other works
Joyce/Foucault: Sexual Confessions examines instances of sexual confession in works of James Joyce, with a special emphasis on Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man and Ulysses. Using Michel Foucault's historical analysis of Western sexuality as its theoretical underpinning, the book foregrounds the role of the Jesuit order in the spread of a confessional force, and finds this influence inscribed into Joyce's major texts. Wolfgang Streit goes on to argue that the tension between the texts' erotic passages and Joyce's criticism of even his own sexual writing energizes Joyce's narratives-and enables Joyce to develop the radical skepticism of power revealed in his work.
Wolfgang Streit is Lecturer, Ludwig Maximilians University, Munich.
For James Joyce, perhaps the most crucial of all human faculties was memory. It represented both the central thread of identity and a looking glass into the past. It served as an avenue into other minds, an essential part of the process of literary composition and narration, and the connective tissue of cultural tradition. In Joyce’s Book of Memory John S. Rickard demonstrates how Joyce’s body of work—Ulysses in particular—operates as a “mnemotechnic,” a technique for preserving and remembering personal, social, and cultural pasts. Offering a detailed reading of Joyce and his methods of writing, Rickard investigates the uses of memory in Ulysses and analyzes its role in the formation of personal identity. The importance of forgetting and repression, and the deadliness of nostalgia and habit in Joyce’s paralyzed Dublin are also revealed. Noting the power of spontaneous, involuntary recollection, Rickard locates Joyce’s mnemotechnic within its historical and philosophical contexts. As he examines how Joyce responded to competing intellectual paradigms, Rickard explores Ulysses’ connection to medieval, modern, and (what would become) postmodern worldviews, as well as its display of tensions between notions of subjective and universal memory. Finally, Joyce’s Book of Memory illustrates how Joyce distilled subjectivity, history, and cultural identity into a text that offers a panoramic view of the modern period. This book will interest students and scholars of Joyce, as well as others engaged in the study of modern and postmodern literature.
“Joyce’s Book of the Dark gives us such a blend of exciting intelligence and impressive erudition that it will surely become established as one of the most fascinating and readable Finnegans Wake studies now available.”—Margot Norris, James Joyce Literary Supplement
In 1914, James Joyce published Dubliners, a collection of short stories depicting life in Dublin at the turn of the century. One hundred years later, readers and critics alike continue to return to this book, Joyce's first major work. One of these critics is Jack Morgan, whose study Joyce’s Cityoffers refreshing readings on the occasion of the Dubliners centennial.
Joyce’s City examines these now classic stories, a number of which are regarded as without equal in English literature, in terms of their historical and political contexts and often from markedly original perspectives. Morgan demonstrates, for example, the influence of American literature on “The Dead”--notably Washington Irving’s influence—and also traces the rich vein of Gothicism prevalent in Joyce’s work from Dubliners through Ulysses.
While evidencing copious research and extensive literary knowledge, Joyce’s City is set forth with a clarity that makes it as pleasurable to read as it is informative.
For decades, James Joyce’s modernism has overshadowed his Irishness, as his self-imposed exile and association with the high modernism of Europe’s urban centers has led critics to see him almost exclusively as a cosmopolitan figure.
In Joyce’s Ghosts, Luke Gibbons mounts a powerful argument that this view is mistaken: Joyce’s Irishness is intrinsic to his modernism, informing his most distinctive literary experiments. Ireland, Gibbons shows, is not just a source of subject matter or content for Joyce, but of form itself. Joyce’s stylistic innovations can be traced at least as much to the tragedies of Irish history as to the shock of European modernity, as he explores the incomplete project of inner life under colonialism. Joyce’s language, Gibbons reveals, is haunted by ghosts, less concerned with the stream of consciousness than with a vernacular interior dialogue, the “shout in the street,” that gives room to outside voices and shadowy presences, the disruptions of a late colonial culture in crisis.
Showing us how memory under modernism breaks free of the nightmare of history, and how in doing so it gives birth to new forms, Gibbons forces us to think anew about Joyce’s achievement and its foundations.
The result of the interaction between Bloom and Dedalus, Kimball argues as a central tenet in her unique reading of Ulysses, is the gradual development of a relationship between the two protagonists that parallels C. G. Jung’s descriptions of the encounter between the Ego and the Shadow in that stage of his theoretical individuation process called "the realization of the shadow." These parallels form a unifying strand of meaning that runs throughout this multidimensional novel and is supported by the text and contexts of Ulysses.
Kimball has provided the first comprehensive study of the relationship between Jungian psychology and Joyce’s Ulysses. Bucking critical trends, she focuses on Stephen rather than Bloom. She also notes certain parallels—synchronicities—in the lives of both Jung and Joyce, not because the men influenced one another but because they speculated about personality at the same historical time. Finally, noting that both Jung and Joyce came from strong Christian backgrounds, she asserts that the doubleness of the human personality fundamental to Christian theology is carried over into Jung’s psychology and Joyce’s fiction.
The original version of Proust, Mann, Joyce in the Modernist Context strove to show how a kindred encyclopedic drive and sacramental sense informed their responses to the epochal trauma, yielding three distinct and monumental visions of the human estate by the 1920s.
The Senses of Nonsense
Alison Rieke University of Iowa Press, 1992 Library of Congress PS228.M63R54 1992 | Dewey Decimal 810.91
The Subaltern Ulysses
Enda Duffy University of Minnesota Press, 1994 Library of Congress PR6019.O9U6383 1994 | Dewey Decimal 823.912
The Subaltern Ulysses was first published in 1994. Minnesota Archive Editions uses digital technology to make long-unavailable books once again accessible, and are published unaltered from the original University of Minnesota Press editions.
How might an IRA bomb and James Joyce's Ulysses have anything in common? Could this masterpiece of modernism, written at the violent moment of Ireland's national emergence, actually be the first postcolonial novel? Exploring the relation of Ulysses to the colony in which it is set, and to the nation being born as the book was written, Enda Duffy uncovers a postcolonial modernism and in so doing traces another unsuspected strain within the one-time critical monolith. In the years between 1914 and 1921, as Joyce was composing his text, Ireland became the first colony of the British Empire to gain its independence in this century after a violent anticolonial war. Duffy juxtaposes Ulysses with documents and photographs from the archives of both empire and insurgency, as well as with recent postcolonial literary texts, to analyze the political unconscious of subversive strategies, twists on class and gender, that render patriarchal colonialist culture unfamiliar.
Ulysses, Duffy argues, is actually a guerrilla text, and here he shows how Joyce's novel pinpoints colonial regimes of surveillance, mocks imperial stereotypes of the "native," exposes nationalism and other chauvinistic ideologies of "imagined community" as throwbacks to the colonial ethos, and proposes versions of a postcolonial subject. A significant intervention in the massive "Joyce industry" founded on the rhetoric and aesthetics of high modernism, Duffy's insights show us not only Ulysses, but also the origins of postcolonial textuality, in a startling new way.
Enda Duffy is assistant professor of English at the University of California at Santa Barbara.
Aware of the act of writing as a temporal process, many modernist authors preserved numerous manuscripts of their works, which themselves thematized time. Textual Awareness analyzes the writing processes in James Joyce's Finnegans Wake, Marcel Proust's À la recherche du temps perdu, and Thomas Mann's Doktor Faustus and relates these to Anglo-American, French, and German theories of text. By relating theory to practice, this comparative study reveals the links between literary and textual criticism.
A key issue in both textual criticism and the so-called crisis of the novel is the tension between the finished and the unfinished. After a theoretical examination of the relationship between genetic and textual criticism, Dirk Van Hulle uses the three case studies to show how?at each stage in the writing process?the text still had the potential of becoming something entirely different; how and why these geneses proceeded the way they did; how Joyce, Proust, and Mann allowed contingencies to shape their work; how these authors recycled the words of their critics in order to inoculate their works against them; how they shaped an intertextual dimension through the processing of source texts and reading notes; and how text continually generated more text.
Van Hulle's exploration of process sheds new light on the remarkable fact that so many modernist authors protected their manuscripts, implying both the authors' urge to grasp everything and their awareness of the dangers of their encyclopedic projects. Textual Awareness offers new insights into the artificiality of the artifact?the novel?that are relevant to the study of literary modernism in general and the study of James Joyce, Marcel Proust, and Thomas Mann in particular.
Dirk Van Hulle is Assistant Professor of English and German Literature, University of Antwerp.
Since its original publication in 1970, Ulysses: the Mechanics of Meaning has become one of the most talked about, cited, and respected of commentaries on Joyce's classic work. Its compact format and its crisp, lucid style make David Hayman's book an essential one for all new readers of Ulysses. For this new edition Hayman has added a convenient chapter-by-chapter account of the action and a substantial afterword extending and amplifying ideas presented in the original edition and briefly summarizing the current critical scene. This makes the book of additional value both to sudents and to the many Joyce scholars who have long depended on the Prentice-Hall edition, now out of print.
In a major rethinking of the functions, methods, and aims of narrative poetics, David Herman exposes important links between modernist and postmodernist literary experimentation and contemporary language theory. Ultimately a search for new tools for narrative theory, his work clarifies complex connections between science and art, theory and culture, and philosophical analysis and narrative discourse. Following an extensive historical overview of theories about universal grammar, Herman examines Joyce’s Ulysses, Kafka’s The Trial, and Woolf’s Between the Acts as case studies of modernist literary narratives that encode grammatical principles which were (re)fashioned in logic, linguistics, and philosophy during the same period. Herman then uses the interpretation of universal grammar developed via these modernist texts to explore later twentieth-century cultural phenomena. The problem of citation in the discourses of postmodernism, for example, is discussed with reference to syntactic theory. An analysis of Peter Greenaway’s The Cook, The Thief, His Wife, and Her Lover raises the question of cinematic meaning and draws on semantic theory. In each case, Herman shows how postmodern narratives encode ideas at work in current theories about the nature and function of language. Outlining new directions for the study of language in literature, Universal Grammar and Narrative Form provides a wealth of information about key literary, linguistic, and philosophical trends in the twentieth century.
James Joyce’s Ulysses is a modern version of Homer’s Odyssey, but Joyce—who was a better scholar of Latin than of Greek—also was deeply influenced by the Aeneid, Virgil’s epic poem about the journey of Aeneas and the foundation of Rome.
Joyce wrote Ulysses during the Irish War of Independence, when militants, politicians, and intellectuals were attempting to create a new Irish nation. Virgil wrote the Aeneid when, in the wake of decades of civil war, Augustus was founding what we now call the Roman Empire. Randall Pogorzelski applies modern theories of nationalism, intertextuality, and reception studies to illuminate how both writers confronted issues of nationalism, colonialism, political violence, and freedom during times of crisis.
This first feminist book-length comparison of D. H. Lawrence and James Joyce offers striking new readings of a number of the novelists’ most important works, including Lawrence’s Man Who Died and Joyce’s Finnegans Wake.
Cynthia Lewiecki-Wilson argues that a feminist reader must necessarily read with and against theories of psychoanalysis to examine the assumptions about gender embedded within family relations and psychologies of gender found in the two authors’ works. She challenges the belief that Lawrence and Joyce are opposites, inhabiting contrary modernist camps; instead they are on a continuum, with both engaged in a reimagination of gender relations.
Lewiecki-Wilson demonstrates that both Lawrence and Joyce write against a background of family material using family plots and family settings. While previous discussions of family relations in literature have not questioned assumptions about the family and about sex roles within it, Lewiecki-Wilson submits the systems of meaning by which gender is construed to a feminist analysis. She reexamines Lawrence and Joyce from the point of view of feminist psychoanalysis, which, she argues, is not a set of beliefs or a single theory but a feminist practice that analyzes how systems of meaning construe gender and produce a psychology of gender.
Lewiecki-Wilson argues against a theory of representation based on gender, however, concluding that Lawrence’s and Joyce’s texts, in different ways, test the idea of a female aesthetic. She analyzes Lawrence’s portrait of family relations in Sonsand Lovers, The Rainbow, and Women in Love and compares Joyce’s Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man with Lawrence’s autobiographical text. She then shows that Portrait begins a deconstruction of systems of meaning that continues and increases in Joyce’s later work, including Ulysses.
Lewiecki-Wilson concludes by showing that Lawrence, Joyce, and Freud relate family material to Egyptian myth in their writings. She identifies Freud’s essay "Leonardo da Vinci and a Memory of Childhood" as an important source for Joyce’s Finnegans Wake, which portrays beneath the gendered individual a root androgyny and asserts an unfixed, evolutionary view of family relations.