Tag Archives: joyce

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A Portrait of The Artist as a Young Man (IV)

Joyce, James. A Portrait of The Artist as a Young Man. New York: Bantam Books, 1992. Print. (First Edition 1916).

“-Pity is the feeling which arrests the mind in the presence of whatsoever is grave and constant in human sufferings and unites it with the human sufferer.” p. 198

“-The tragic emotion, in fact, is a face looking two ways, towards terror and towards pity, both of which are phases of it. You see I use the word arrest. I mean that the tragic emotion is static. Or rather the dramatic emotion is. The feelings excited by improper art are kinetic, desire and loathing. Desire urges us to possess, to go to something; loathing urges us to abandon, to go from something. The arts which excite them, pornographical or didactic, are therefore improper arts. The esthetic emotion (I use the general term) is therefore static. The mind is arrested and raised above desire and loathing.-” p. 199

“The long slender flattened skull beneath the long pointed cap brought before Stephen’s mind the image of a hooded reptile. The eyes, too, were reptilelike in glint and gaze. Yet at that instant, humbled and alert in their look, they were lit by one tiny human point, the window of a shrivelled soul, poignant and self-enbittered.” p. 200

“Beauty expressed by the artist cannot awaken in us an emotion which is kinetic or a sensation which is purely physical. It awakens, or ought to awaken, or induces, or ought to induce, an esthetic stasis, an ideal pity or an ideal terror, a stasis called forth, prolonged and at last dissolved by what I call the rhythm of beauty.-” p. 200

“-Art-said Stephen-is the human disposition of sensible or intelligible matter for an esthetic end.” p. 201

“-Aquinas-said Stephen-says that is beautiful the apprehension of which pleases.-
Lynch nodded.
-I remember that-he said-Pulcra sunt quae visa placent.-” p. 201

“-Static therefore-said Stephen-Plato, I believe, said that beauty is the splendour of truth. I don’t think that it has meaning but the true and the beautiful are akin. Truth is beheld by the intellect which is appeased by the most satisfying relations of the intelligible; beauty is beheld by the imagination which is appeased by the most satisfying relations of the sensible. The first step in the direction of truth is to understand the frame and scope of the intellect itself, to comprehend the act itself of intellection. Aristotle’s entire system of philosophy rests upon his book of psychology and that, I think, rests on his statement that the same attribute cannot at the same time and in the same connexion belong to and not belong to the same subject. The first step in the direction of beauty is to understand the frame and scope of the imagination, to comprehend the act itself of esthetic apprehension.” p. 202

“though the same object may not seem beautiful to all people, all people who admire a beautiful object find in it certain relations which satisfy and coincide with the stages themselves of all esthetic apprehension. These relations of the sensible, visible to you through one form and to me through another, must be therefore the necessary qualities of beauty.” p. 203

Saint Thomas Aquinas

An altarpiece in Ascoli Piceno, Italy, by Carlo Crivelli (circa 1435–circa 1495) – The Yorck Project: 10.000 Meisterwerke der Malerei. Via Wikimedia.

****”Aquinas says: Ad pulcritudinem tria requiruntur integritas, consonanita, claritas. I translate it so: Three things are needed for beauty, wholeness, harmony and radiance. Do these correspond to the phases of apprehension? … You see it as one whole. You apprehend its wholeness. That is integritas… You apprehend it as complex, multiple, divisible, separable, made up of its parts, the result of its parts and their sum, harmonious. That is consonantia… he had in mind symbolism or idealism, the supreme quality of beauty being a light from some other world, the idea of which the matter was but the shadow, the reality of which it was but the symbol. I thought he might mean that claritas was the artistic discovery and representation of the divine purpose in anything or a force of generalization which would make the esthetic image a universal one, make it outshine its proper conditions… The radiance of which he speaks in the scholastic quidditas, the whatness of a thing. This supreme quality is felt by the artist when the esthetic image is first conceived in his imagination. The mind in that mysterious instant Shelley likened beautifully to a fading coal. The instant wherein that supreme quality of beauty, the clear radiance of the esthetic image, is apprehended luminously by the mind which has been arrested by its wholeness and fascinated by its harmony is the luminous silent stasis of esthetic please, a spiritual state very like to that cardiac condition which the Italian physiologist Luigi Galvani, using a phrase almost as beautiful as Shelley’s, called the enchantment of the heart.-” p. 206-207

***”These forms are: the lyrical form, the form wherein the artist presents his image in immediate relation to himself; the epical form, the form wherein he presents his image in mediate relation to himself and to other; the dramatic form, the form wherein he presents his image in immediate relation to other.-” p. 208

“Here are some questions I set myself: Is a chair finely made tragic or comic? Is the portrait of Mona Lisa good if I desire to see it? Is the bust of Sir Philip Crampton lyrical, epical or dramatic? If not, why not?-
-Why not, indeed?-said Lynch, laughing.”

“The simplest epical form is seen emerging out of lyrical literature when the artist prolongs and broods upon himself as the centre of an epical event and this form progresses till the centre of emotional gravity is quidistant from the artist himself and from others. The narratice is no longer purely personal. The personality of the artist passes into the narration itself, flowing round and round the persons and the action like a vital sea. This progress you will see easily in that old English ballad Turpon Hero, which begins in the first person and ends in the third person. The dramatic form is reached when the vitality which has flowed and eddied round each person fills every personal with such vital force that he or she assumes a proper and intangible esthetic life. The personality of the artist, as first a cry or a cadence or a mood and then a fluid and lambent narrative, finally refines itself out of existence, impersonalizes itself, so to speak. The esthetic image in the dramatic form is life purified in and reprojected from the human imagination. The mystery of esthetic like that of material creation is accomplished. The artist, like the God of creation, remains within or behind or beyond or above his handiwork, invisible, refined out of existence, indifferent, paring his fingernails.-” p. 208-209

“A fine rain began to fall from the high veiled sky and they turned into the duke’s lawn, to teach the national library before the shower came… ‘No wonder the artist retired within or behind his handiwork after having perpetrated this country.-” p. 209

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A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (III)

Joyce, James. A Portrait of The Artist as a Young Man. New York: Bantam Books, 1992. Print. (First Edition 1916).

“sighting in the ascent, through a region of viscid gloom.
“He halted on the landing before the door and then, grasping the porcelain knob, opened the door quickly.  He waited in fear, his soul pining within him, praying silently that death might not touch his brow as he passed over the threshold, that the fiends that inhabit darkness might not be given power over him. He waited still at the threshold as the entrance to some dark cave. Faces were there; eyes: they waited and watched.” p. 130

“He had sinned. He had sinned so deeply against heaven and before God that he was not worthy to be called God’s child.” p. 131

“His eyes were dimmed with tears and, looking humbly up to heaven, he wept for the innocence he had lost.” p. 133

“Once soul was lost; a tiny soul: his. It flickered once and went out, forgotten, lost. The end: black cold void waste.” p. 134

“and had first spoked of the kingdom of God to poor fishermen, teaching all men to be meek and humble of heart.” p. 135

“he called first to His side, the carpenters, the fishermen, poor and simple people following a lowly trade, handling and shaping the wood of trees, mending their nets with patience.” p. 135

“His blood began to murmur in his veins, murmuring like a sinful city summoned from its sleep to bear its doom. Little flakes of fire fell and powdery ashes fell softly, alighting on the houses of men. They stirred, waking from sleep, troubled by the heated air.” p. 136

“SUNDAY was dedicated to the mystery of the Holy Trinity, Monday to the Holy Ghost, Tuesday to the Guardian Angels, Wednesday to Saint Joseph, Thursday to the Most Blessed Sacrament of the Altar, Friday to the Suffering Jesus, Saturday to the Blessed Virgin Mary.” p. 141

“the three theological virtues, in faith in the Father Who had created him, in hope in the Son Who had redeemed him, and in love of the Holy Ghost Who had sanctified him;” p. 142

“Frequent and violent temptations were a proof that the citadel of the soul; had not fallen and that the devil raged to make it fall.” p. 147

“Some of the boys had then asked the priest if Victor Hugo were not the greatest French writer. The priest had answered that Victor Hugo had never written half so well when he had turned against the church as he had written when he was a catholic.” p. 150

“He had seen himself, a young and silentmannered priest, entering a confessional swiftly, ascending the altarsteps, incensing, genuflecting, accomplishing the vague acts of the priesthood which pleased him by reason of their semblance of reality and of their distance from it.” p. 152

Dieric Bouts,the older. At The Church of Saint Peter, Leuven, Belgium. Created: 1464 – 1467. Via Wikimedia.

“the order of Melchisedec.” p. 153

*****”He drew forth a phrase from his treasure and spoke it softly to himself:
-A day of dapled seaborne clouds.-
The phrase and the day and the scene harmonised in a chord. Words. Was it their colours? He allowed them to glow and fade, hue after hue: sunrise gold, the russet and green of apple orchards, azure of waves, the grey-fringed fleece of clouds. No, it was not their colours: it was the pose and balance of the period.” p. 160

askance

***”They were voyaging across the deserts of the sky, a host of nomads on the march, voyaging high over Ireland, westward bound. The Europe they had come from lay out there beyond the Irish Sea, Europe of strange tongues and valleyed and woodbegirt and citadelled and of entrenched and marshalled races.” p. 161

John Everett Millais – National Portrait Gallery. Via Wikimedia.

“His morning walk across the city had begun; and he foreknew that as he passed the sloblands of Fairview he would think of the cloistral silverveined prose of Newman; that as he walked along the North Strand Road, glancing idly at the windows of the provision ships, he would recall the dark humour of Guido Cavalcanti and smile; that as he went by Baird’s stone cutting works in Talbot Place the spirit of Ibsen would blow though him like a keen wind, a spirit of wayward boyish beauty;”p. 170

“His mind when wearied of its search for the essence of beauty amid the spectral words of Aristotle or Aquinas turned often for its pleasure to the dainty songs of the Elizabethans.” p. 170

“His thinking was a dusk of doubt and selfmistrust, lit up at moments by the lightnings of so clear a splendour that in those moments the world perished about his feet as if it had been fire consumed: and thereafter his tongue grew heavy and he met the eyes of others with unanswering eyes for he felt that the spirit of beauty had folded him round like a mantle and that in reveie at least he had been acquainted with nobility.” p. 171

“he had tried to peer into the social life of the city of cities through the words implere ollam denariorum which the rector had rendered sonorously as the filling of a pot with denaries.” p. 174

“but yet it wounded him to think that he would never be but a shy guest at the feast of the world’s culture and that the monkish learning, in terms of which he was striving to forge out an esthetic philosophy, was held no higher by the age he lived in than the subtle and curious jargons of heraldry and falconry.” p. 174

“the droll statue of the national poet of Ireland.” p. 174

“-Aquinas-answered Stephen-says pulcra sunt quæ visa placent.-” p. 180

“-In so far as it is apprehended by the sight, which I suppose means here esthetic intellection, it will be beautiful. But Aquinas also says Bonum est in quod tendit appetitus. In so far as it satisfies the animal craving for warmth fire is a good. In hell, however, it is an evil.-” p. 180

Nineteenth century Photochrom postcard of the Cliffs of Moher in County Clare in Ireland showing cliffside table and refreshments. Via Wikimedia.

“-These questions are very profound, Mr Dedalus-said the dean.-It is like looking down from the cliffs of Moher into the depth. Many go down into the depths and never come up. Only the trained diver can go down into those depths and explore them and come to the surface again.-” p. 181

“You know Epictetus?-
-An old gentleman-said Stephen coarsely-who said that the soul is very like a bucketful of water.-
-He tells us in his homely way-the dean went on-that he put an iron lamp before a statue of one of the gods and that a thief stole the lamp. What did the philosopher do? He reflected that it was in the character of a thief to steal and determined to buy and earthen lamp next day instead of the iron lamp.-” p. 181

“whether words are being used according to the literary tradition or according to the tradition of the marketplace. I remember a sentence of Newman’s, in which he says of the Blessed Virgin that she was detained in the full company of the saints. The use of the word in the marketplace is quite different. I hope I am not detaining you.-” p. 182

“That?-said Stephen.-Is that called a funnel? Is it not a tundish?-” p. 182

“-And to distinguish between the beautiful and the sublime-the dean added-to distinguish between moral beauty and material beauty. And to inquire what kind of beauty is proper to each of the various arts.” p. 184

“-In pursuing these speculations-said the dean conclusively-there is, however, the danger of perishing of inanition.” p. 184

The British Library – Image taken from page 274 of ‘Finland in the Nineteenth Century: by Finnish authors. Illustrated by Finnish artists. Via Wikimedia.

“-I may not have his talent-said Stephen quietly.
-You never know-said the dean brightly.-We never can say what is in us. I most certainly should not be despondent. Per aspera ad astra.-“

Suttree

Suttree influences

from books-and-movies-that-influenced-the-writing-of-suttree thread at http://www.cormacmccarthy.com

Davis Grubbs

Night of the Hunter

George Washington Harris

Sut Lovingood: Yarns Spun By a Nat’ral Born Durn’d Fool

William Faulkner

Sutpen in Absalom, Absalom! and The Reivers

William Shakespeare

(characters liked by Faulkner) Falstaff, Prince Hal, Nick Bottom, Mercutio, Huck Finn, Jim

Falstaff at Herne’s Oak, from “The Merry Wives of Windsor,” Act V, Scene v, James Stephanoff, 1832. Via Wikimedia.

Scene from A Midsummer Night’s Dream (1848-1851). Titania and Bottom. Edwin Henry Landseer (1802–1873). Via Wikimedia.

Joseph Conrad

Dante Alighieri

James Joyce

Ulysses

Nelson Algren

The Neon Wilderness and A Walk on the Wild Side

Ralph Waldo Emerson

Walt Whitman

T.S. Eliot

W. B. Yeats

John Keats

Hermann Hesse

Siddhartha

Mark Twain

Huckleberry Finn

Herman Melville

H. L. Mencken

(Henry Louis Mencken) See The Philosophy of Friedrich Nietzsche (1907)

Scopes Trial (1925)

The State of Tennessee v. John Thomas Scopes/The Scopes Monkey Trial and Tennessee’s Butler Act. (On human evolution)

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Dubliners

Joyce, James. Dubliners. New York: Signet Classics, 2007. Print. (First ed. 1914.)

The Sisters

The priest “Sometimes he had amused himself by putting difficult questions to me, asking me what one should do in certain circumstances or whether such and such sins were mortal or venial or only imperfections. His questions showed me how complex and mysterious were certain institutions of the Church which I had always regarded as the simplest acts.” p. 5

“His face was very truculent, grey and massive, with black cavernous nostrils and circled by a scanty white fur. There was a heavy odour in the room — the flowers.” p. 7

**An Encounter p. 13

“It was too late and we were too tired to carry out our project of visiting the Pigeon House.” p. 18

“- I say! Look what he’s doing!
As I neither answered nor raised my eyes Mahony exclaimed again:
-I say …He’s a queer old josser!
-In case he asks us for our names, I said, let you be Murphy and I’ll be Smith.” p. 21

“A slap on the hand or a box on the ear was no good: what he wanted was to get a nice warm whipping. I was surprised at this sentiment and involuntarily glanced up at his face. As I did do I met the gaze of a pair of bottle-green eyes peering at me from under a twitching forehead. I turned my eyes away again.” p. 22

Araby

“I allowed the two pennies to fall against the sixpence in my pocket. I heard a voice call from one end of the gallery that the light was out. The upper part of the hall was now completely dark.
Gazing up into the darkness I saw myself as a creature driven and derided by vanity; and my eyes burned with anguish and anger.” p. 32

After the Race

“They walked northward with a curious feeling of disappointment in the exercise, while the city hung its pale globes of light above them in a haze of summer evening.” p. 42

Two Gallants

“Corley halted at the first lamp and stared grimly before him. Then with a grave gesture he extended a hand toward the light and, smiling, opened it slowly to the gaze of his disciple. A small gold coin shone in the palm.” p. 59

A Little Cloud

“A gentle melancholy took possession of him. He felt how useless it was to struggle against fortune, this being the burden of wisdom which the ages had bequeathed to him.” p. 72

“Their faces were powdered and they caught up their dresses, when they touched earth, like alarmed Atalantas.” p. 73

“The bar seemed to him to be full of people and he felt that the people were observing him curiously. He glanced quickly to right and left (frowning slightly to make his errand appear serious), but when his sight cleared a little he saw that nobody had turned to look at him:” p. 75-76

Lord Byron

“Hushed are the winds and still the evening gloom,
Not e’en a Zephyr wanders through the grove,
Whilst I return to view my Margaret’s tomb
And scatter flowers on the dust I love.”

Counterparts

“The dark damp night was coming and he longed to spend it in the bars, drinking with his friends amid the glare of gas and the clatter of glasses.” p. 92

“His wife was a little sharp-faced woman who bullied her husband when he was sober and was bullied by him when he was drunk. They had five children. A little boy came running down the stairs.” p. 101

Clay

“Then she asked all the children had any of them eaten it — by mistake, of course–but the children all said no and looked as if they did not like to eat cakes if they were to be accused of stealing.” p. 108

I dreamt that I Dwelt (song)

“I had riches too great to count, could boast
of a high ancestral name,
But I also dreamt, which pleased me most,
That you loved me still the same.” p. 110

“But no one tried to show her her mistake” p. 111

A Painful  Case

“He had an odd autobiographical habit which led him to compose in his mind from time to time a short sentence about himself containing a subject in the third person and a predicate in the past tense. He never gave alms to beggars, and walked firmly, carrying a stout hazel.” p. 114

“The workmen’s discussions, he said, were too timorous; the interest they took in the question of wages was inordinate. He felt that they were hard-featured realists and that they resented an exactitude which was the product of a leisure not within their reach. No social revolution, he told her, would be likely to strike Dublin for some centuries.” p. 117

“he heard the strange impersonal voice which he recognised as his own, insisting on the soul’s incurable loneliness. We cannot give ourselves, it said: we are our own.” p. 118

“he realised that she was dead, that she had ceased to exist, that she had become a memory.” p. 123

No one wanted him; he was outcast from life’s feast. He turned his eyes to the grey gleaming river, winding along towards Dublin. Beyond the river he saw a goods train winding out of Kingsbridge Station, like a worm with a fiery head winding through the darkness, obstinately and laboriously. It passed slowly out of sight; but still he heard in his ears the laborious drone of the engines reiterating the syllables of her name.” p. 124

Ivy Day in the Committee Room

“-There’s no tumblers, said the old man.
-O, don’t let that trouble you, Jack, said Mr Henchy. Many’s the good man before now drank out of the bottle.” p. 136

“Then he took up the corkscrew and went out of the door sideways, muttering some form of salutation.
-That’s the way it begins, said the old man.
-The thin edge of the wedge, said Mr Henchy.” p. 137

“Mr Crofton sat down on a box and looked fixedly at the other bottle on the hob. He was silent for two reasons. The first reason, sufficient in itself, was that he had nothing to say; the second reason was that he considered his companions beneath him.” p. 138-139

“Mr Hynes hesitated a little longer. Then amid the silence he took off his hat, laid it on the table and stood up. He seemed to be rehearsing the piece in his mind. After a rather long pause he announced:

The Death of Parnell
6TH OCTOBER 1891″ p. 142

“-Good man, Joe! said Mr O’Connor, taking out his cigarette-papers and pouch the better to hide his emotion.” p. 144

A Mother

Mr O’Madden Burke “His magniloquent western name was the moral umbrella upon which he balanced the fine problem of his finances. He was widely respected.” p. 155

Grace

“She believed steadily in the Sacred Heart as the most generally useful of all Catholic devotions and approved of the sacraments. Her faith was bounded by her kitchen but, if she was put to it, she could believe also in the banshee and in the Holy Ghost.” p. 169

Soldiers at Dublin Castle, c.1905. Via Wikimedia.

Dublin Castle (Caisleán Bhaile Átha Cliath)

peloothered (drunk)

 

“The General of the Jesuits stands next to the Pope.” p. 175

Saint Ignatius of Loyola, first Superior General. Via Wikimedia.

The Prisoner of the Vatican

Orangeman

Pope Leo XIII “union of the Latin and Greek Churches.” p. 179

Lux upon Lux
Lux in Tenebris

Papal infallibility

John of Tuam

*****The Dead p. 189

Mr Browne “He was astonished to hear that the monks never spoke, got up at two in the morning and slept in their coffins…
-The coffin, said Mary Jane, is to remind them of their last end.” p. 217

***”Our path through life is strewn with many such sad memories: and were we to brood upon them always we could not find the heart to go on bravely with our work among the living. We have all of us living duties and living affections which claim, and righly claim, our strenuous endeavours.” p. 220

“And everything went on beautifully until Johnny came in sight of King Billy’s statue: and whether he fell in love with the horse King Billy sits on or whether he thought he was back again in the mill, anyhow he began to walk round the statue.
Gabriel paced in a circle round the hall in his goloshes amid the laughter of the others.” p. 224

*****”He stood still in the gloom of the hall, trying to catch the air that the voice was singing and gazing up at his wife. There was grace and mystery in her attitude as if she were a symbol of something. He asked himself what is a woman standing on the stairs in the shadow, listening to distant music, a symbol of. If he were a painted he would paint her in that attitude. Her blue felt hat would show off the bronze of her hair against the darkness and the dark panels of her skirt would show off the light tones. Distant Music he would call the picture if he were a painter.” p. 226

“O, the rain falls on my heavy locks
And the dew wets my skin,
My babe lies cold…” p. 227

****”A wave of yet more tender joy escaped from his heart and went coursing in warm flood along his arternies. Like the tender fires of stars moments of their life together, that no one knew of or would ever know of, broke upon and illuminated his memory. He longed to recall to her those moments to make her forget the years of their dull existence together and remember only their moments of ecstasy.” p. 230-231

“A ghostly light from the street lamp lay in a long shaft from one window to the door. Gabriel threw his overcoat and hat on a couch and crossed the room towards the window. He looked down into the street in order that his emotion might calm him a little.” p. 233

*******”The air of the room chilled his shoulders. He stretched himself cautiously along under the sheets and lay down beside his wife. One by one they were all becoming shades. Better pass boldly into that other world, in the full glory of some passion, than fade and wither dismally with age. He thought of how she who lay beside him had locked in her heart for so many years that image of her lover’s eyes when he had told her that he did not wish to live.” p. 240

*******”A few light taps upon the pane made him turn to the window. It had begun to snow again. He watched sleepily the flakes, silver and dark, falling obliquely against the lamplight. The time had come for him to set out on his journey westward. Yes, the newspapers were right: snow was general all over Ireland. It was falling on every part of the dark central plain, on the treeless hills, falling softly upon the Bog of Allen and, farther westward, softly falling into the dark mutinous Shannon waves. It was falling too, upon every part of the lonely churchyard on the hill were Michael Furey lay buried. It lay thickly drifted on the crooked crosses and headstones, on the spears of the little gate, on the barren thorns. His soul swooned slowly as he heard the snow falling faintly though the universe and faintly falling, like the descent of their last end, upon all the living and the dead.” p. 241


Afterword

“The Irish playwright John Millington Synge once said that words should have the crispness of an autumn apple,” p. 244

“Dubliners was accepted for publication in 1904 and, due to the prevailing puritan prudery, it got passed from fearful publisher to fearful publisher and was eventually published nine years later. It was not a book that reverberated like the shot heard around the world; indeed it sold three hundred copies, of which one hundred were purchased by the author himself, a not unfamiliar tactic to gain bestseller status,” p. 247

Ireland “is somewhat a matriarchy, which to me is a society where men look down on their women with reverence.” p. 248

“Some scholars say that James Augustine Aloysius Joyce could not, in his early years, write anything that he had not observed and personally experienced in some way; thus Dubliners follows a path through childhood, through puberty and ts sins of the flesh, a constant torment to Irish teenagers, sometime maturity, and the emerging of the man into public view.” p. 248

To read Anton Chekhov Анто́н Па́влович Че́хов

The Dead (1987 film) John Huston