The Secret of Ulysses: An Analysis of James Joyce's Ulysses

By Rolf R. Loehrich | Go to book overview

11. THE ETERNAL PARENTS MISJUDGED AS UNFAITHFUL

What was the central existential situation in the life of Bloom and Stephen to which they reacted such that "cette fichue position" came about? Stephen becomes aware of it when Zoe states, "It was a commercial traveller married her ( Georgina Johnson -- THE QUEEN) and took her away with him".546 Florry identifies the traveller as Mr. Lambe from London, Stephen says, "Lamb of London who takest away the sins of our world",546 that is he identifies him as the REDEEMER. So for Stephen, " Georgina Johnson is dead and married (to the REDEEMER)."546 Bloom becomes aware of it when Boylan allows him to look through the keyhole while lying in a wild embrace with Marion, Bloom's wife (representing the QUEEN). In both cases what has happened in the past is actualized in the present.

The mirror is put up to nature i.e. to the central existential situation of Bloom and Stephen, for that matter of man. Bloom and Stephen see themselves in the mirror as one, Shakespeare, and Shakespeare is thought according to the analysis of Shakespeare by Stephen in the library.

What is the central existential situation? It is presented in the corresponding relations, ordered in the following table.

I repeat, what is the central existential conflict? Stephen analyzes Shakespeare and Shakespeare-Hamlet. Hamlet, in Shakespeare's play, is informed that his father, King of Denmark, was murdered, that his mother and uncle, now reigning are responsible for the death. Hamlet, rejecting his love for Ophelia, feigns madness in order to take his revenge, but vacillates in taking action. Ophelia drowns herself. Her brother, Laertes, challenges Hamlet to a duel, they both receive death wounds and Hamlet kills his treacherous uncle before he dies. We read, "Is it possible that that player Shakespeare, a ghost by absence, and in the vesture of buried Denmark, a ghost by

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The Secret of Ulysses: An Analysis of James Joyce's Ulysses
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Table of Contents vii
  • List of Tables ix
  • Acknowledgments xi
  • 1. the Secret 1
  • 2. the Intent 4
  • I - The Interpretation 7
  • 3. the Action 9
  • 4. the Continuity of the Story 13
  • 5. Episode 15 24
  • 6. the Contending Power Groups 55
  • 7. the Lex Eterna 61
  • 8. the Other Dimension 73
  • II- The Code with Joyce 83
  • 9. the Riddles 86
  • 10. Cette Fichue Position 94
  • 11- the Eternal Parents Misjudged As Unfaithful 98
  • 12. the Unfaithfulness of Man 104
  • 13. the Riches of Life 110
  • 14. the Manifestation of God 115
  • III- The Aesthetic Form Of Ulysses 123
  • 15. the Artistic Intent 125
  • 16- the Aesthetic Media: The First Framework 128
  • 17. the Hidden Plot 129
  • 18- Deflections from the Hidden Plot To the Aesthetic Media 132
  • 19. the Changing Viewpoints 136
  • IV- Existence for Joyce 139
  • 20. Fiction or Discovery? 141
  • 21- Bona Fide Dream-Reports And Secondary Thought Elaborations 143
  • 22- Psycho Therapeutics -- the Way Of Atonement 167
  • 23. Guilt -- Infantile and Existential 176
  • 24. Man's Status in Existence 184
  • Index 189
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