Zeitschrift für Literatur und Philosophie
Rejoyce. Virtual Text.
Peter Krapp
What was the nature of Mr Krapp's location at the precise moment of his first meeting with the virtual Mr Bloom?
Friday before Pentecost: 4:47 p.m. Mr Krapp was seated at the table in his bedroom, facing his humming rig, a second-generation Apple Macintosh Powerbook 140 from 1991, to the noisy tune of the modem having just dialled atfz, atdt29902, surrounded by like equipment in his room, Austr. 15 on the 1st floor of the building (between Austr. and Moosstr. in fact, north side of the path, facing southwest, receiving little or no light even at the brightest points of the morning, but plenty in the afternoon) in the neighbourhood of Petershausen, city of Konstanz, state of Baden-Württemberg, Germany, etc.
What is his attitude towards reading online?
An expensive habit. All to do with borrowing... and the gift, returned. "Reading an electronic text can be both a rereading and a first reading at the same time", he quotes to himself a second time, and again. "An electronic text may never repeat itself in the conventional sense, but we may always read the text as if it were a repetition." This he remembers from reading, offline, Jay David Bolter ("Literature in the Electronic Space", Myron C. Tuman (Hrsg.), Literacy Online. The Promise (and Peril) of Reading and Writing with Computers, Pittsburgh 1992, 19-42, here: 31). Screen Memories. Dissertation Research.
Describe his finances.
According to his last bank statement, half a month's rent remained in his account. Since then he had written a check, counting towards the rather large telephone bill, and the internet bill was yet to be expected. His purse contained three kinds of small change in foreign currency, only one of which, Swiss, was of use to him now. As for native valuta, two fives and approximately another DM 1.50 in change remained.
What affect was had on Mr Krapp by this unfortunate situation?
A rather pressing inclination to stay at home and attend to his studies, rather than to dine and drink at any of the few local restaurants and public houses (respectively) with his friends.
How did Mr Bloom feel?
Rather hungry for virtual kidneys.
How did Mrs Bloom feel?
Yes, yes... (In reading there is always a certain logic at work which puts us in touch with voices: "In the buginning is the woid (...) Silence in thought! Spreach!" Fun again, wait: Finnegans Wake p. 378, of course. But we are getting ahead of ourselves.)
What length of time did Mr Krapp take to find, online, the e-text of the book Ulysses, wrotten by a Mr Germ's Choice of Dublin?
Four days approximately, including breaks taken for: sleep, toilet, meals, class, visits to his parents, telephone conversations of length varying from 12 seconds to four hours three minutes and forty six seconds, Grosso shopping, laughing, essay writing, daydreaming, film watching, friendly arguments with his colleagues, and net surfing. And then, there it was, right (t)here, at gophe r://blaze.trentu.ca:70/11/Faculty_Publications/jjoyce/ulysses/
His reaction?
Overwhelmingly, particularly, and gratefully mixed. His impressions ranged from confused to amazed. He proclaimed upon finding the e-text of the book: yes! (reading aloud) it is against copyright! (who cares)...
Quote a variety of sentences double-checked in downloading by Mr Krapp, starting from the beginning of the book and proceeding towards the end.
Agenbite of inwit. Conscience. Yet here's a spot. (p.14) A ghoststory (p.21) Couldn't he fly a bit higher than that, eh? (p.32) History, Stephen said, is a nightmare from which I am trying to awake. (p. 34) - Nother dying come home father. (p.35) I called you naughty boy because I do lot like that other world. (p.63) Oot. (p.77) Once you are dead you are dead. (p.87) Plenty to see and hear and feel yet. (p.94) Gone with the wind. (p.118) I have much, much to learn. (p.119) Beware of what you wish for in youth because you will get it in middle life. (p.161) There's no-one as blind as a fellow who won't see, if you know what that means. (p.267) Do fish ever get seasick? (p.310) What am I following him for? Still, he's the best of that lot. (p.369) When in doubt persecute Bloom. (p.378) Go the whole hog. (438) No, I flew. My foes beneath me. And ever shall he. World without end. (p.466) L. Boom. (p.529) Lean on me. (p.539) What was Stephen's auditive sensation? He heard in a profound ancient male unfamiliar melody the accumulation of the past. What was Bloom's visual sensation? He saw in a quick young male familiar form the predestination of the future. (p.565) Was the proposal of asylum accepted? Promptly, inexplicably, with amicability, gratefully it was declined. (p.570) ...O Jamesy let me up out of this... (p.633) ...serve him right its all his own fault if I am an adulteress... (p.641) ...that was why I liked him because I saw he understood or felt what a woman is... (p.643)
...and yes I said yes I will Yes. (p.644)
And which of these grabbed Mr Krapp most prominently?
History, Stephen said, is a nightmare from which I am trying to awake.
Of course, epic Derek Walcott, Omeros. Also scanned in. Earlier, but not public domain (yet). Good replication can always parasite bad replication. Then, what Derrida used to quote first of all, before two words. Book in hand. Introduction to Husserl's Origin of Geometry, 1962. Odyssean repetition presupposed by historicity or traditionality. Husserl's project Jamesy too? Or in fact Joyce proceeding from a certain anti-historicism? And elsewhere, more Derridean joyce of reading. Strange coupling. And then, of course, Derek Walcott. Return to the muse of history. Even more odd.
Explain Mr Krapp's feelings about Mrs Marion Bloom.
They were like noun and verb, when one wants to conjugate the other declines. Yes, Molly: luscious, bodacious, much love drippingly flowing out of. Reading aloud: tellafunic, extremely difficult.
What parallels, if any, does Mr Krapp see between Mrs Marion Bloom and Penelope?
Bed. Staying. Poldy long gone doing other don't know not sure things. Other women: playing. Suitors: Mulligan first, as Antonious. Then Blazes, Eurymachus. Taking care of. Comes home everything changed. Molly on the bed, sleeping.
What, according to Mr Krapp, are the anthemes of Mr Joyce's penultimate work?
Death. Money religion misunderstanding. Agenbite of inwit (remorse of conscience). Loss of youth. Life. Ghosts.
Give examples.
Paddy Dignam: obvious. Ghosts: Rudy, Mrs Dedalus, Mr Virag: Shakespeare. Bloom: "Once you are dead you are dead." Wants life foremost while it lasts. Stephen, whose mother is beastly dead: nother is dying. Agenbite: Boylan; Martha Clifford; Gerty, even. "Plenty to see and hear and feel yet." Hold onto.
Is there hope for them yet, Mr Krapp?
Oh, guess, yes. Stephen we know will bloom (oh no, pun intended) will write has much to but will learn. Soft Molly still has it in her.
What about Paddy Dignam?
Paddy! Poor fellow. Six feet under now. No hope.
Give an example of a small detail of Mr Joyce's complex writing style.
"see I havent forgotten it all I thought I had only for the grammar a noun is the name of any person place or thing pity I never tried to read that novel"
What does that mean?
With the e-text under the fingers of right hand and book in left, comparing paging and wording and reading again and again, make it new. Yet feels as if book never read. Unfinished business with Mr Joyce, as ever.
Does Mr Krapp feel indebted to Mr Joyce for having written his most difficult read to date?
Why yes, but difficult is not the word one should use in such cases. Complex. Rewarding...
What is it that causes Mr Krapp to frown so?
Feels punished again for having chosen this pastime. Re-reading this reminds of another epic in the genre, always. Recurring nightmare:
"The Aegeans's chimera is a camera, you get my drift, a drifter is the hero of my book." "I never read it," I said. "Not all the way through." The lift of the arching eyebrows paralyzed me like Medusa's shield, and I turned cold the moment I had said it. "Those gods with hyphens, like Hollywood producers," I heard my mouth babbling as ice glazed over my chest. "The gods and the demi-gods aren't much use to us." "Forget the gods," Omeros growled, "and read the rest."
Comparing with Walcott means having to re-read also Homer, available perhaps in e-text also, oh yes, Massachusetts Institute of Technology Cambridge has those, and means having to finally finalize that paper on Omeros, before things get out of hand again, not to be too pessimistic: before another year of reading comes between completion of paper on Nobel Prize poem and the ever fleeting today. Influences, he says, remain a nightmare from which I am trying to awake.
Describe Mr Krapp right at this very moment.
Redoubled. Backing up. 98.6x Fahrenheit. Approx. 37x Celsius.
Please elaborate.
Tired of ventriloquising. Notebook computer switched on still. Hungry. Toes cold. Late. Behind with work. Thinking about tomorrow last day of. Too soon, too late. Whitsun passing. All is not lost, now nor ever. Ulysses re-read.