Roberta Gefter Wondrich Exhibitionary Forms in Ireland: James Joyce’s Exhibits of Irish Modernity The Great Exhibition of 1851 marked the beginning of a bond between capitalism, consumer culture, the emergent advertising and the imperial ideology of England that would consolidate its hold not only economically but semiotically well into the early twentieth century. Within the new ‘scopic’ sense of the Empire promoted by the International Exhibitions in the British context, the specificity of Ireland as internal colony and emancipating nation is worth considering. The 1907 Dublin International Exhibition, in spite of its success, failed to elicit a strong interest on the part of Irish artists and intellectuals, at a peak time in the history of cultural nationalism championed by the Celtic Revival movement, with the two notable exceptions of novelist Bram Stoker and, to a lesser degree, of playwright John Millington Synge. The first part of the essay considers the cultural implications of the expositions in Ireland and the 1907 Dublin Exhibition in the light of the defining trope of the core- periphery relationship. The second and main part of this study focuses on what appears to be one of the most interesting and articulate textualizations of the “exhibitionary complex” in Irish – and English – literary culture, which should rather be ascribed, it is my contention, to the work of James Joyce, notably in Dubliners and Ulysses. This applies to the distinctively Irish minor expository form of the (Orientalist) bazaar (the Araby and Mirus bazaars, respectively in Dubliners and Ulysses), the phantasmagoria of commodity culture, the ubiquity and the spectacle of the imported colonial commodities as an instance of cultural imperialism, the consumption of Orientalist images as an escapist rather than imperialist fantasy, the nexus between the ephemeral expository space and erotic degradation, the museum (“Lestrygonians”), the press and advertising (“Aeolus”), the monumentary apparatus of the city (“Wandering Rocks”), the Victorian seaside resort indirectly evoked as a sexualized space of leisure (“Nausicaa”), the pageant of colonial Ireland’s efforts of technical and scientific progress satirised in “Ithaca”, and, finally, the very idea of the modern city as exhibition.

"Exhibitionary Forms in Ireland: James Joyce’s Exhibits of Irish Modernity”

GEFTER WONDRICH, ROBERTA
2014-01-01

Abstract

Roberta Gefter Wondrich Exhibitionary Forms in Ireland: James Joyce’s Exhibits of Irish Modernity The Great Exhibition of 1851 marked the beginning of a bond between capitalism, consumer culture, the emergent advertising and the imperial ideology of England that would consolidate its hold not only economically but semiotically well into the early twentieth century. Within the new ‘scopic’ sense of the Empire promoted by the International Exhibitions in the British context, the specificity of Ireland as internal colony and emancipating nation is worth considering. The 1907 Dublin International Exhibition, in spite of its success, failed to elicit a strong interest on the part of Irish artists and intellectuals, at a peak time in the history of cultural nationalism championed by the Celtic Revival movement, with the two notable exceptions of novelist Bram Stoker and, to a lesser degree, of playwright John Millington Synge. The first part of the essay considers the cultural implications of the expositions in Ireland and the 1907 Dublin Exhibition in the light of the defining trope of the core- periphery relationship. The second and main part of this study focuses on what appears to be one of the most interesting and articulate textualizations of the “exhibitionary complex” in Irish – and English – literary culture, which should rather be ascribed, it is my contention, to the work of James Joyce, notably in Dubliners and Ulysses. This applies to the distinctively Irish minor expository form of the (Orientalist) bazaar (the Araby and Mirus bazaars, respectively in Dubliners and Ulysses), the phantasmagoria of commodity culture, the ubiquity and the spectacle of the imported colonial commodities as an instance of cultural imperialism, the consumption of Orientalist images as an escapist rather than imperialist fantasy, the nexus between the ephemeral expository space and erotic degradation, the museum (“Lestrygonians”), the press and advertising (“Aeolus”), the monumentary apparatus of the city (“Wandering Rocks”), the Victorian seaside resort indirectly evoked as a sexualized space of leisure (“Nausicaa”), the pageant of colonial Ireland’s efforts of technical and scientific progress satirised in “Ithaca”, and, finally, the very idea of the modern city as exhibition.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11368/2817731
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