“Ireland sober is Ireland free”: the confluence of nationalism and alcohol in the traumatic, repetitive, and ritualistic response to the famine in James Joyce’s Ulysses

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“Ireland sober is Ireland free”: the confluence of nationalism and alcohol in the traumatic, repetitive, and ritualistic response to the famine in James Joyce’s Ulysses

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Title: “Ireland sober is Ireland free”: the confluence of nationalism and alcohol in the traumatic, repetitive, and ritualistic response to the famine in James Joyce’s Ulysses
Author: Baillie, Brian
Advisor: Sherman, Debora
Department: Haverford College. Dept. of English
Type: Thesis (B.A.)
Running Time: 101746 bytes73369 bytes
Issue Date: 2005
Abstract: Joyce deftly weaves the fabric of Irish life in Ulysses. One can easily picture his characters walking down the most obscure of streets and encountering the most immediate of acquaintances. The lyrical nature of Irish conversation provides the linguistic backdrop for the various challenges of language that Joyce embarks upon throughout the novel. From remembering the dead to requesting a pint amongst friends, a mimetic portrait of Dublin is created through the text. Perhaps the most stereotypical of activities in the Irish social fabric is drinking, which both produces and reproduces a nationalist rhetoric. The scene of a dark pub filled with men scorned by the English inevitably becomes filled with political rhetoric and rebel cries. The confluence of drinking and nationalist fervor occurs in the “Cyclops” episode of Ulysses; those imbricated discourses enact a stranglehold on the Irish populace. This drinking is social and not necessarily abusive, a fact noted in Joyce’s breezy language in the “Hades” episode, “Expect we’ll pull up here on the way back to drink his health. Pass round the consolation. Elixir of life.” This particular description embodies many of the elements within this stereotype. In that carriage, the Irish men view alcohol as the natural outlet for mourning and death; Bloom, however, stands far outside the society where, in the original Irish, usquebeagh is in fact the “waters of life”, or “elixir of life”. That space of death and misery in the larger historical context is, arguably, the source of a drinking culture.
Subject: Joyce, James, 1882-1941 -- Criticism and interpretation
Subject: Joyce, James, 1882-1941. Ulysses
Subject: Drinking of alcoholic beverages -- Ireland
Subject: Nationalism -- Ireland
Terms of Use: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/us/
Permanent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10066/628

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Baillie, Brian. "“Ireland sober is Ireland free”: the confluence of nationalism and alcohol in the traumatic, repetitive, and ritualistic response to the famine in James Joyce’s Ulysses". 2005. Available electronically from http://hdl.handle.net/10066/628.

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