Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Bloomusalem, really? and what about those eight beatitudes?

Chapter 13 was a very interesting chapter, kind of weird in my mind, but interesting to say the least. It was chalk-filled with recurring themes which have been presented throughout the novel (epic) so far, including parallax, metempsychosis, and the man in macintosh. His little day dreams at night or whatever they are considered were kind of sad for the most part. A lot of these thoughts were focused negatively towards Bloom, with Bello continually abusing him, and then he becomes king and then is found out for a fraud? One of the parts that I thought was significant about the chapter other than Bloom reaching out to Stephen and taking care of him, was specifically Joyce's little story about Bloom becoming king. With quotes such as "He's a man like Ireland wants" and calling the new Golden City "Bloomusalem" were significant to me because Bloom, a man who is degraded and not even considered to be a true Irishmen (especially by the Citizen) has now become the greatest Jewish-Irish hero to the people of Dublin. This part is as if it is digging down deep into Bloom's conscious into how he wish people regarded him. For most of the stories that are provided in the chapter, this is one of the only happy ones, which made me happy as well because for once Bloom was not being ridiculed. This did not last long though because soon the man in Macintosh arrived to disprove his greatness by saying "Don't believe a word he says". Dignam also plays a part in one of the later stories as ridiculing him.

There are also a lot of religious references in the chapter such as "Bloomusalem" and the mentioning of the eight beatitudes, to name a few. A quick mention about the beatitudes, to me it is kind of sac religious I guess but interesting how the eight beatitudes in this little story are "Beer beef battledog buybull businum barnum buggerum bishop". I don't want to say that they are funny, but just interesting how the first two beatitudes are beer and beef, then the last one is bishop.

Sorry that this blog is a little all over the place but there is a lot to talk about that jumped out at me, and these are some of my initial thoughts, I am sure I will have more to say later.

One question I do have though is about the man in Macintosh. He appears and speaks for the first time in Bloom's little dream-esque sequence and I am still wondering who he is. He ridicules Bloom after Bloom is pronounced ruler, then again later on with this man Lipoti Virag. Maybe I didn't catch what was going on completely but this Lipoti Virag character wore a brown macintosh. Does that signify something? And is Virag Bloom's grandfather? Or is Bloom calling him Granpapachi mean something completely different or just part of the queer stories that are being told?

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