Engendering of His Soul

“Where was his boyhood now? Where was the soul that had hung back from her destiny, to brood alone upon the shame of her wounds and in her house of squalor and subterfuge to queen it in faded cerements and wreaths that withered at the touch? Or where was he?” (144)

I think that it is very interesting that Stephen attributes female characteristics to his soul, calling it at various times a ‘she.’ In this passage, there is an allusion to her power, a ‘queen,’ but that power has gone away and become ‘faded.’ This may refer to him growing out of childhood and the permanent condition of his soul in an impure state as an adult.

Commonplace 10/3

“His heart trembled in an ecstasy of fear and his soul was in flight. His soul was soaring in an air beyond the world and the body he knew was purified in a breath and delivered of incertitude and made radiant and commingled with the element of the spirit. An ecstasy of flight made radiant his eyes and wild his breath and tremulous and wild and radiant his windswept limbs”

Joyce, James, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man. New York: Dover, 1994. 121.

Rare exaltation of spirit. Repetition of words is salient here.