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THE SHAKESPEAREAN DEMIURGE IN JOYCE’S FORGE

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Chapter Summary

Near the centers of Ulysses and Finnegans Wake Joyce models the forge of artistic creation as an abstraction of the female pelvis, an image originating in Plato’s Timaeus wherein divine, artistic, and sexual making are isomorphic. In the Wake Shem tricks Shaun into drawing a figure from Euclid that also depicts their mother’s reproductive and excretory organs. Stephen’s aesthetic theory in Ulysses unfolds amidst comparable imagery. Although Plato and Homer are its generative elements, both renderings of Joyce’s forge cast Shakespeare as the Demiurge, the agent of creation in Plato.

10.1163/9789042032385_009
/content/books/b9789042032385s009
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