Worksheet 1 on “The Dead” • Define “epiphany” in two traditions: Greek and Christian. When is the Feast of Epiphany? Start your answer by stating “According to…” to indicate the source information. You can also consult Robert Scholes’ notes on “Epiphanies and Epicleti” on our class website.
The Feast of Epiphany • Epiphany (from Koine Greek (ἡ) ἐπιφάνεια, epiphaneia "appearance", "manifestation") is a Christian feast day that celebrates the revelation of God in human form in the person of Jesus Christ. It falls on 6 January or, in many countries, on the Sunday that falls between 2 January and 8 January.
Epiphany, a sudden, intuitive perception of or insight into the reality or essential meaning of something, usually initiated by some simple, homely, or commonplace occurrence or experience. • The Greek tradition • The climactic moment when a god appears and imposes order on the scene as in Greek dramas • The Christian tradition • a Christian festival, observed on January 6, commemorating the manifestation of Christ to the gentiles in the persons of the Magi; Twelfth-day.
Religious vs. Secular • The original concept has its religious connotation • Christian Epiphany: • Manifestation of god’s • presence within the created world • James Joyce’s definition is secular in that the source for epiphanies is rooted in daily commonplace occurrences.
Sudden revelation • Joycean Epiphany: a secular experience signifying • a sudden sense of radiance & revelation that one may feel while perceiving a commonplace object • Standard (now): the sudden flare into revelation of an ordinary object or scene
Epicleti/Epiclesis • In a letter to Constantine Curran in August of 1904 Joyce wrote "I am writing a series of epicleti-- ten-- for a paper... I call the series Dubliners to betray the soul of that hemiplegia or paralysis which many consider a city." • the relationship between "epiphany" and "epicleti" as epicleti being the catalyst that leads to the epiphanic moment.
Epicleti/Epiclesis • A part of the prayer of consecration in which the presence of the Holy Spirit is invoked to bless the Eucharistic elements, Holy Communion , or the communicants, or both.
Paralysis/Hemiplegia • Hemiplegia refers to paralysis of one side of the body • Paresis is a condition typified by partial loss of movement, or impaired movement. Neurologists use the term paresis to describe weakness, and plegia to describe paralysis in which all movement is lost. The term paresis comes from the Ancient Greek: πάρεσις "letting go" or "paralysis" from παρίημι "to let go, to let fall."
a late manifestation of syphilis, characterized by progressive dementia and paralysis. A pun or a cover-up word for the real reason why the priest died in the first story “The Sisters” in Dubliners. In “The Dead” there are no priests invited or present at the party. Paralysis & Paresis
“The stickiness factor” [of an idea] shows the powerfulness of that idea; Another way to look at this is to say how vulnerable human beings can be! Colonized by an idea
Who are paralyzed by what • Lily: stuck with her job/failed romance 42; • Freddy: drowned in his booze ; • Mary Jane: intoxicated in her academy piece which has no melody 50; • Monks sleeping in the coffins 64; • Johnny the horse circling around forever 70-71; • Gretta: unable to live her life to the fullest;
Lily’s role • Comment on Lily’s role in presenting Gabriel’s dramatic entrance. What can we infer about Gabriel from his faux pas or clumsy interactions with Lily? • Faux pas, French for “false steps” on social occasions, a slip or blunder in etiquette, manners, or conduct; an embarrassing social blunder or indiscretion.
Irony • The stage is set up: everybody is craning his or her neck to Gabriel’s arrival; • To everybody’s disappointment, Gabriel pushes wrong buttons right and left; • Lily’s name implies purity; however, she is not longer a girl she used to be;
The Uncle Charles PrincipleStylistic inflectionfrom Hugh Kenner, Joyce’s Voices • “The narrative idiom need not be the • narrator’s.” • “Reality […] does not answer to the ‘point • of view,’ the monocular vision, the single • ascertainable tone. A tone, a voice, is • somebody’s, a person’s, and people are • confined to being themselves, are • Evelines, are Croftons, are Stephens.” • Lily’s diction in “The Dead”
Point of Viewomniscient or limited • Author/writer • Narrator/persona • Characters • Major/Minor • Flat/Round • Protagonist/antagonist/Counterparts • Reader/Critic • First-person • Second-person • Third-person • At the level of diction: whose language? • Lily vs. Gabriel
Gabriel’s DutiesOne of the archangels seated next to God’s throne • explains mysteries about future political events • (Milton) • delivers special • revelations from God to individuals (annunciation) • intercedes with God for those oppressed by evil • interpreter of dreams
Question 4 • Perform a character analysis of Lily. Though a flat character, Lily has her “round” share of pains and problems. In addition to her stated status as a servant girl for the Morkans, where else can you infer that Lily is a poor girl from the lower class in Dublin? Describe the language she ues in the text. How does paralysis apply to her case?
Lily’s pains and Problems • Failed romance • Lily’s view of men • Paralysis • Taking a fraction of a part for the whole • Fallacious reasoning • Irony: as caretaker’s daughter, who is going to take care of Lily? Could she recover from her paralysis?
Significance of Goloshes 45Narrative Economy vs. Narrative Ecology • Focus on the goloshes/galoshes as a text and spell out different readings or interpretations. Why are they given such a significant space in a short story? • Gretta’s perspective on galoshes: • Gabriel’s attitude towards galoshes: • Aunt Julie’s perplexity about galoshes: • Connection between Gabriel and Michael
Gabriel vs. MichaelIs it just the weather to blame? • Take things into his own hands: • Goloshes for its protective function; • Booked a room at a fancy hotel so that his wife won’t catch a dreadful cold again this year; • Got consumption as a result of working at the gasworks; • The word “gas” is mentioned several times; • Came to see Grett for the last time without any protection on a rainy night;
From a mother’s point of view, whom Gretta should marry? • Gabriel • Gretta: sent to a convent all of a sudden; • Speculation on her potential pregnancy; • Disapproval of this relationship from her parents; • Gretta passively accepted the arrangement; • Michael: Not accepted by Gretta’s family; • In poor health with an incurable disease at the time; • Give up on living; • Who is really suicidal: Gabriel or Michael?
Different readings of goloshes/galoshes (Fr.) • Gretta’s perspective • “Gretta” means a child of light in Greek; • Aunt Julia’s ignorance about Goloshes • Gabriel’s attitude: • “Everybody has a pair on the continent” (red herring) • Red herring is an idiomatic expression referring to a rhetorical tactic of diverting attention away from an item of significance