“Come, hours, be ours!”: Temporal Disharmonies in Joyce’s Sense of Time

in Reading Joycean Temporalities
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The author of this chapter studies temporality in terms of Joyce’s presentation of consciousness, subjectivity, and perception of time in “The Dead,” Ulysses, and Finnegans Wake. The chapter considers the unique nature of the bedroom scene to argue that the specificity of the bedroom setting affects the manner in which time is configured. Selected examples from all three texts illustrate the point that in his handling of narrative time Joyce systematically progresses towards a significant spatial and temporal dislocation that involves different “times” and “spaces.” Accordingly, the consciousness of his characters is marked by a “sense of time” rather than time in general. In their “mindscapes,” time is a component of the space-time continuum, as reflected in the Wakean phrase: “Where are we at all? and whenabouts in the name of space?” (558.33).

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