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Joyce's KaleidoscopeAn Invitation to Finnegans Wake$
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Philip Kitcher

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780195321029

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195321029.001.0001

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Nayman of Noland

Nayman of Noland

(p.31) 4 Nayman of Noland
Joyce's Kaleidoscope

Philip Kitcher

Oxford University Press

This chapter considers a character that embodies a quite different vision of human life, the frightened dreamer of the upstairs bedroom, Shem the Penman. Shem, it suggests, offers a vision of how a human life might be lived, one that contrasts with those traced in ALP's monologue and in HCE's attempt at self-vindication. There are many ways of questioning that vision, and it is important for anyone drawn to realizing it to confront those questions—if the prosecutor did not exist, Shem would have to invent him. The prosecutor lives within Shem—as Shem and ALP live within HCE—as all these voices live within the dreamer at the Wake. The problem for the dreamer is to understand and to assess their competing claims.

Keywords:   Shem the Penman, Wake voices, Shaun, prosecutor, dreamer

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