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Crux 1. a vital, basic, decisive, or pivotal point: The crux of the trial was his whereabouts at the time of the murder. 2. a cross. 3. something that.

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Presentation on theme: "Crux 1. a vital, basic, decisive, or pivotal point: The crux of the trial was his whereabouts at the time of the murder. 2. a cross. 3. something that."— Presentation transcript:

1 crux 1. a vital, basic, decisive, or pivotal point: The crux of the trial was his whereabouts at the time of the murder. 2. a cross. 3. something that torments by its puzzling nature; a perplexing difficulty. 4/28/20151

2 OED fig. a. A difficulty which it torments or troubles one greatly to interpret or explain, a thing that puzzles the ingenuity; as ‘a textual crux’. Cf. CRUCIFY v. 2c. (Used by Sheridan and Swift with the sense ‘conundrum, riddle’.) [Cf. G. kreuz, Grimm, 2178g, (quoted from Herder 1778, and Niebuhr); according to Hildebrand taken from the scholastic Latin crux interpretum, etc.] 4/28/20152

3 Crux is the smallest of the 88 modern constellations, but is one of the most distinctive. Its name is Latin for cross, and it is dominated by a cross-shaped asterism that is commonly known as the Southern Cross. 4/28/20153

4 4 James Joyce vs. Homer Function of Allusion: as juxtaposition for comparison and contrast Though the most stable character in Dubliners, Gabriel sounds somewhat suicidal to some readers when meditating on his wife’s young lover’s early death: “Better pass boldly into that other world, in the full glory of some passion, than fade and wither dismally with age” (Dubliners 224). This is the crux of the whole text. The allusion/reference to “that other world” as the realm of spirits recalls the scene in Homer’s Odyssey, where the ghost of Achilles addresses Odysseus: “Better, I say, to break sod as a farm hand for some poor countryman, on iron rations, than lord it over all the exhausted dead” (Odyssey 201).

5 4/28/20155 Two Value Codes Achilles chose to die young but in glory His mother warned him if he went to war, he would die young; Achilles’mother hid the youth in a girl’s dress; The allusion/reference to “that other world” as the realm of spirits recalls the scene in Homer’s Odyssey, where the ghost of Achilles addresses Odysseus: “Better, I say, to break sod as a farm hand for some poor countryman, on iron rations, than lord it over all the exhausted dead” (Odyssey 201).

6 4/28/20156 Is Gabriel Suicidal? Could You Write a Sequel to The Dead? For the most part, their existence together seems dull as revealed in the text; Is the life of Gabriel and Gretta worse than what Gretta would have had with Michael then? What does it take to recover from a discovery like Gabriel makes? Could Gabriel overcome his paralysis and go on?

7 4/28/20157 James Joyce’s Delicate Balance Flip-flop Symbols, Tropes & Metaphors throughout: Lily : Flowers used for funerals; but Easter symbolizes the Resurrection of the dead; Incongruity : between the title, “The Dead” and time of the party, the high point of the Christmas / New Year celebration & the time for the feast of epiphany. West : an established trope for death in the Western Literature: “The time had come for him to set out on his journey westward” (Dubliners 225). But The West also represents the true Ireland, and the home country of Gabriel’s wife, Gretta—who wants to vacation there.

8 4/28/20158 Death Weighs Heavily Throughout Framed by The Sisters & The Dead List of deaths of family members, relatives, & friends in The Dead: _______________; List of deaths in fiction, plays, ballads, songs & paintings: _______________;

9 4/28/20159 Ambiguity is not the same as Ambivalence The most striking strength of “The Dead” lies in its delicate balance, and more important, something shadowed, unstated, & veiled. This has made the story a great challenge in literary interpretation. Wayne Booth puts the most shrewdly, “In short, the author’s judgment is always present, always evident to anyone who knows how to look for it.”[1] But this doesn’t help much, it seems.[1] [1] Wayne Booth in The Rhetoric of Fiction. (Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1961), page 20.

10 4/28/ Putting Things in Perspectives Structurally & Thematically, without The Dead, Dubliners would have been quite different. Before this story, most characters are in some way paralyzed or stuck in repeating patterns (as in Counterparts, the most symmetrical story that shows how terrible patterns in Irish life are repeated). The Dead signals a turn towards what I would call Joyce’s Counterpoint Narrative that weaves together multiple story lines into a new story, therefore breaking the new ground not only technically but also thematically.

11 4/28/ Joyce’s New Perspective on his Home Country Irish Warmth, Generosity & Hospitality vs. Joyce’s experience in Rome—In September of 1906, Joyce wrote: “Sometimes thinking of Ireland it seems to me that I have been unnecessarily harsh. I have reproduced (in Dubliners at least) none of the attraction of the city for I have never felt at my ease in any city since I left it except in Paris. I have not reproduced its ingenuous insularity and its hospitality.[1][1] [1]

12 4/28/ Recurrent Explorations The Dead in Dubliners—Gabriel’s generous tears. Gabriel has been surprised and wounded. He feels his identity is under attack; but this makes a portal of great discoveries about other people, about his home country; & about himself. However, in “A Painful Case,” a man who cannot be generous causes the suicide of the only woman who ever loved him. Joyce treats this theme elsewhere, less satisfactorily in Exiles but more fully in Ulysses.

13 4/28/ Generosity: A Consistent Theme Gabriel weeps (as Jesus weeps), but no longer for himself; “A shameful consciousness of his own person, assailed him. He saw himself as a ludicrous figure, acting as a pennyboy for his aunts, a nervous well-meaning sentimentalist, orating vulgarians and idealizing his own clownish lusts, the pitiable ‘fatuous fellow he had caught a glimpse of in the mirror. Instinctively he turned his back more to the light lest she might see the shame that burned upon his forehead” (221).

14 4/28/ Truly Connected to the Living through the Dead Generous tears filled Gabriel’s eyes. He had never felt like that towards any woman but he knew that such a feeling must be love. 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 where 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 through the universe and faintly falling, like the descent of their last end, upon all the living and the dead. Alight taps

15 4/28/ If you were to write a Sequel to The Dead A moment of Pro’lepsis-- The representation or taking of something future as already done or existing; anticipation : Gabriel has imaginatively visited Michael Fury’s grave at the end of the story. Who will be there hand in hand by his side? Is Gabriel going to commit suicide? Is Gabriel going to leave Grette for good?

16 Self vs. Other The self and other: one-dimensionality blocks the way to connecting with others; Gabriel’s sense of superiority (educational and cultural grade) and his identify is narrowly defined just as Molly and Gretta; Significance of the Snow: blanketing the dead and the living, expanding one’s intellectual horizon; Topic 1 on Essay 3 4/28/201516

17 Gabriel’s Isolation While debating whether he should quote Browning, Shakespeare or Irish melodies in his speech, He lives in his ivory tower, his cocoon the shell of which is shield or sealed by his superior education; Out of touch with his folks, Out of touch with his mother tongue; Out of touch with his Irish cultural roots; He even did not know his wife very well! 4/28/201517

18 On the self and Other When you’ve lived as long as I you’ll see that every human being has his shell and that you must take the shell into account. By the shell I mean the whole envelope of circumstances. There’s no such thing as an isolated man or woman; we’re each of us made up of some cluster of appurtenances. What shall we call our self? Where does it begin? Where does it end? It overflows into everything that belong to us—and then it flows back again” 4/28/201518

19 Gabriel and his counterparts Joycean Method of Counterpoint Michael, Gretta and Gabriel Lily and Gabriel; Molly and Gabriel; These interactions, progressively painful, function as portal of discoveries about himself, his folks, and his country; 4/28/201519

20 Part vs. Whole Many characters take part for the whole, unable to live their lives to the fullest; Dr. P’s problem (review Oliver Sacks) Narrow nationalism (Molly Ivors) Idealized romanticism (Gretta) Superior education (Gabriel) Freddy’s drinking problem Mary Jane, resting on her laurels 4/28/201520

21 Past, Present and Future Intrusion of the past or the future upon the present; As a result, many people don’t live at the moment for “now” Nostalgia or sentimentality (Gretta) Good old days (conversation on opera 178) 4/28/201521

22 Active vs. Passive Goloshes: living one’s life actively (taking precaution) or living one’s life passively (accepting whatever 188); Last party Gretta got a dreadful cold (161/162); but this year Gabriel bought her a pair of goloshes and booked a fancy hotel for her so that she would not get a dreadful cold; 4/28/201522

23 Gabriel Editing his Speech 43/161: Robert Browning/Shakespeare/Irish Melodies— he worries his quotations will be above the heads of his audience; 55-56/172 The park: Phoenix Park, representing rebirth 4/28/201523

24 a mythical bird A phoenix is a mythical bird that is a fire spirit with a colorful plumage and a tail of gold and scarlet (or purple, blue, and green according to some legends). It has a 500 to 1000 year life-cycle, near the end of which it builds itself a nest of twigs that then ignites; both nest and bird burn fiercely and are reduced to ashes, from which a new, young phoenix or phoenix egg arises, reborn anew to live again. 4/28/201524

25 Wellington Monument in Dublin The Wellington Testimonial was built to commemorate the victories of Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington. Wellington, a member of the Anglo- Irish upper class, also known as the 'Iron Duke', was born in Dublin. 4/28/201525

26 Features of the Testimonial There are four bronze plaques cast from cannons captured at Waterloo - three of which have pictorial representations of his career while the fourth has an inscription. The plaques depict 'Civil and Religious Liberty' by John Hogan, 'Waterloo' by Thomas Farrell and the 'Indian Wars' by Joseph Kirk. The inscription reads: Asia and Europe, saved by thee, proclaim Invincible in war thy deathless name, Now round thy brow the civic oak we twine That every earthly glory may be thine. 4/28/201526

27 4/28/ The Liffey (An Life in Irish) a river in Ireland, which flows through the center of Dublin, 56

28 Three Graces 56/172 the Three Graces (Agalaia, Euphrosyne, and Thalia) are the daughters of Zeus and Eurynome, and together they personify grace, beauty, and the enjoyment of life. They accompany the Muses, as well as Aphrodite and Eros (love) and are responsible for what is best in art and for the quality of charm that is found in love and in life. 4/28/201528

29 Paris 56/172 This son of Priam, King of Troy, and his wife Hecuba had been exposed on a mountainside as an infant because his mother had a dream that he would be the cause of the destruction of Troy. 4/28/201529

30 The apple "For the fairest“ Prince Paris with apple by H.W. Bissen, Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek, CopenhagenH.W. BissenNy Carlsberg Glyptotek In celebration of the marriage of Peleus and Thetis, Lord Zeus, father of the Greek pantheon, hosted a banquet on Mount Olympus.PeleusThetisZeusGreek pantheonMount Olympus Eris, the goddess of strife (no one wanted a troublemaker at a wedding) wasn’t invited. For revenge, Eris threw the golden Apple of Discord inscribed with the word "Kallisti" — "For the fairest" — into the party, provoking a squabble among the attendant goddesses over for whom it had been meant. Eris Apple of DiscordKallisti 4/28/201530

31 4/28/ The Judgment of Paris

32 4/28/ The abduction of Helen King Menelaus of Sparta

33 Thought-tormented music 56/172 Foreshadows the song The Lass of Aughrim P5Lz2iHE P5Lz2iHE 4/28/201533

34 Westward 65 Proleptic moment to predict what will happen after the story proper ends —85/198 Freddy’s mother will die (183) Aunt Julia’s death (197) Gabriel’s visit to Michael Furey’s grave (198); 4/28/201534

35 The victims…of the hospitality 65/180 Victima is a beast for sacrifice Oxymoron, something paradoxical Princely failing 66/181 4/28/201535

36 Irish hospitality 66/ Consult Richard Ellmann’s essay online Most important, “The Dead” signals a change of attitude (Ellmann 373) in James Joyce towards his home country; It also signals a turning point in James Joyce as a writer as well as a man; It is a proleptic moment for his masterpiece Ulysses (1922) 4/28/201536

37 Gabriel Conroy and Leopold Bloom Gabriel has a wife who hid her secret in the past; Could Gabriel stand the test? Pody’s wife Molly is going to meet Boylan at 4:00 pm in her house, in the very bed! Could Poddy stand the test? 4/28/201537

38 We were living in a less spacious age 66/181 A metaphor that refers to a crowded age in which people don’t tolerate each other too well; Gabriel’s brother Constantine (176), a priest is absent from the party, a significant absence (Constantine is the first to advocate religious tolerance), Lack those qualities of humanity, of hospitality, of kindly humor; 4/28/201538

39 Absent faces 67/181 Pat is dead; Gabriel’s mother is dead; Gabriel’s brother Constantine (representing religious toleration) is significantly absent from the party; Though Michael Furey does not belong to the family, he will come back to haunt the living—foreshadowing vs. prolepsis 4/28/201539

40 Past vs. Present 181 “But yet,” continued Gabriel, his voice falling into a softer inflection, “there are always in gatherings such as this sadder thoughts that will recur to our minds: thoughts of the past, of youth, of changes, of absent faces that we miss here tonight. 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 rightly claim, our strenuous endeavours. 4/28/201540

41 The Judgment of Paris 182 one of the events that led up to the Trojan War/ to the foundation of Rome— Destruction and construction/discontinuity vs. continuity. 4/28/201541

42 Bribes from three goddesses Hera, wife and half sister of Zeus, offers power Athena, daughter of Zeus born out of his head, offers wisdom; Aphrodite, born from the sea foam (aphros), offers the most beautiful woman to Paris; 4/28/201542

43 Death and Rebirth Negative reading of Paris; Positive reading of Paris; The fall of Troy led to the establishment of Rome; 4/28/201543

44 4/28/ Ambiguity is not the same as Ambivalence The most striking strength of “The Dead” lies in its delicate balance, and more important, something shadowed, unstated, & veiled. This has made the story a great challenge in literary interpretation. Wayne Booth puts the most shrewdly, “In short, the author’s judgment is always present, always evident to anyone who knows how to look for it.”[1] But this doesn’t help much, it seems.[1] [1] Wayne Booth in The Rhetoric of Fiction. (Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1961), page 20.

45 4/28/ Putting Things in Perspectives Structurally & Thematically, without The Dead, Dubliners would have been quite different. Before this story, most characters are in some way paralyzed or stuck in repeating patterns (as in Counterparts, the most symmetrical story that shows how terrible patterns in Irish life are repeated). The Dead signals a turn towards what I would call Joyce’s Counterpoint Narrative that weaves together multiple story lines into a new story, therefore breaking the new ground not only technically but also thematically.

46 4/28/ Joyce’s New Perspective on his Home Country Irish Warmth, Generosity & Hospitality vs. Joyce’s experience in Rome—In September of 1906, Joyce wrote: “Sometimes thinking of Ireland it seems to me that I have been unnecessarily harsh. I have reproduced (in Dubliners at least) none of the attraction of the city for I have never felt at my ease in any city since I left it except in Paris. I have not reproduced its ingenuous insularity and its hospitality.[1][1] [1]

47 4/28/ Recurrent Explorations The Dead in Dubliners—Gabriel’s generous tears. Gabriel has been surprised and wounded. He feels his identity is under attack; but this makes a portal of great discoveries about other people, about his home country; & about himself. However, in “A Painful Case,” a man who cannot be generous causes the suicide of the only woman who ever loved him, a counterpoint/counterpart to “The Dead” Joyce treats this theme elsewhere, less satisfactorily in Exiles but more fully in Ulysses.

48 4/28/ Generosity: A Consistent Theme 193 Gabriel weeps (as Jesus weeps), but no longer for himself; “A shameful consciousness of his own person, assailed him. He saw himself as a ludicrous figure, acting as a pennyboy for his aunts, a nervous well-meaning sentimentalist, orating vulgarians and idealizing his own clownish lusts, the pitiable ‘fatuous fellow he had caught a glimpse of in the mirror. Instinctively he turned his back more to the light lest she might see the shame that burned upon his forehead” (221/195).

49 4/28/ Truly Connected to the Living through the Dead Generous tears filled Gabriel’s eyes. He had never felt like that towards any woman but he knew that such a feeling must be love. 197 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 where 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 through the universe and faintly falling, like the descent of their last end, upon all the living and the dead. Alight taps

50 4/28/ If you were to write a Sequel to The Dead A moment of Pro’lepsis-- The representation or taking of something future as already done or existing; anticipation : Gabriel has imaginatively visited Michael Fury’s grave at the end of the story. Who will be there hand in hand by his side? Is Gabriel going to commit suicide? Is Gabriel going to leave Grette for good?


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