Some theatre each day keeps the doctor away…

Artistic Routine

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Can routine ever be of primary interest in a story?  Of driving interest?  Every story can seemingly begin with, “such and such had always been happening, and then one day…” (one day something different happened).

Mind you, it being rather late, and me just thinking of this now, I’ve not bothered to think of any counterexamples or counterarguments.  Ha.  Is Ulysses an example of routine?  I’m trying to think if there was anything in it that was particularly inertial, particularly…out of the mundane.  Stephen and the other guy (Bloom, that’s his name, right?  Leopold Bloom.  Gosh I can’t believe I forgot that) had that tete a tete at the end when they were walking back to the house, which was kind of out of the mundane (“one day we finally connected”)…

I have this feeling that there’s a huge blind spot I’m unaware of, and there’s a whole oeuvre lurking in there.  It’s glinting there just out of reach and sense, like anaesthetic sleep in the eye.

But that’s what Joyce set out to do, right?  Find the epic in the mundane, or something like that.  Perhaps that’s the only notable example (not that I’m saying it’s necessarily an actual example) of what I’m talking about.

My thoughts turn to this after, of course, Hamlet, where we find the broadest slice of life brought on by extremity.  Is Ulysses then the broadest slice of life brought on by nothing?  (And, more importantly, what is the opposite of extremity?  Is it ‘nothing’?  Replace nothing with whatever it is, in that previous sentence.)



Written by epistemysics

October 19, 2013 at 4:03 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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