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A Study of James Joyce's A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man

Title
A Study of James Joyce's A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man
Authors
Choi, Uhn Kyung
Issue Date
1962
Department/Major
대학원 영어영문학과
Publisher
이화여자대학교 대학원
Degree
Master
Abstract
A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man was refused by the English and Irish publishers before it was published in 1916. This refusal of acceptance of the book proves that James Joyce magnified the scope of the novel departing from the conventional mode. The novel which seems to be a simple story of Stephen Dedalus's adolescence, modifies simplicities by its establishment of complex ideas, the book embodies the myth of Dedalus. Combining Ovid's myth in the eighth book of Metamorphoses with his personal history, Joyce looks into the central character's mind and records Stephen's process of development, Stephen Dedalus comes to reject his home, religion and country and looks out on the world with the artist's view. Joyce introduces the concept of the evolutionary progress in art. He divides art into three forms; the lyrical form in which the artist presents his image in immediate relation to himself, the epical form in which he presents his image in mediate relation to himself and to others; the dramatic form in which he presents his image in immediate relation to others. There is an apparent obsession with the church. Stephen says that he is a product of Catholicism, and his friend, Cranly states; It is a curious thing ... how your mind is supersaturated with religion in which you say you disbelieve. Moreover, it is recognizable that Joyce is cruel to what man has thought about God but he never derides or negates the divinity of God. Stephen says to Cranly that he would be shocked by blasphemy. Ireland which Joyce rejected is his birthplace. A passage concerning a British teacher at University College reveals this revolt. ---The language in which we are speaking is his before it is mine. How different are the words home, Chirst, write these words without unrest of spirit, His language, so familiar and so foreign, will always be for me an acquired speech. I have not made or accepted its words, My voice holds them at bay. My soul frets in the shadow of his language. Stephen speaks of his forefathers who threw off their own language and allowed a handful of foreigners to subject them and asks, "do you fancy I am going to Day in my own life and person debts they made? What for?" The national humiliation which is deeply ingrained in the mind of Stephen, makes him revolt and whenever he faces falsehood, hypocrisy and shame, he sharpens his eyes. Stephen Dedalus whose name implies the artist sacrificed by society, severs the relations with his home, religion and his country. I will not serve that in which I no longer believe, whether it call itself my home, my fatherland, or my Church, and I will try to express myself in some mode of life or art as freely as I can and as wholly as I can, using for my defence the only arms I allow myself to use-silence, exile, and cunning. Stephen Dedalus's plans for exile at the end of the book to forge in the smithy of his soul the uncreated conscience of his race,"prove that the fabulous artificer is well prepared for encountering the reality of experience. James Joyce using the new technique, eqiphany, varied each chapter of A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, Perhaps the most significant effect of James Joyce is upon the word, Actually he could do anything with words, Joyce depicted manysided characters using words with many meanings. A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man is an impressionistic autobiography which is presented through the consciousness of Stephen Dedalue, James Joyce tells his story in third person and sees the external reality through Stephen's eyes. Time Present is dominating but Stephen sounds out Time Past through his memory. James Joyce has "created a demand for literature which is not an escape from life but its central expression." He awakened the readers and gave them impulse to demand a multi-dimensional literature.
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