A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (Audio: Lecture III.1.2)
“You’ll notice what’s going on here. All the details out there are experienced by the boy in terms of his own psychological association system. And this is the way Joyce is building this whole, this whole big thing. It’s always the inward reflections that accompany the action that he’s putting his stress on. And you’ll see how these develop. As the boy goes on and the education of the Catholic school system gets into him he’s incorporating the imagery of the Christian mythology in his associations. And it’s through this that he gradually affects that transition from Ireland to the continent, the flight of Daedalus from the local to the general.”
Campbell interprets Joyce’s Portrait, linking both Christian and Irish legends. In his own life he proclaimed to Bill Moyers, “…I took my instruction from reading Thomas Mann and James Joyce, both of whom applied mythological themes to the interpretation of the problems, questions and concerns of young men growing up in the modern world.” True words for the 20th and now the 21st Century. Learn of Daedalus’ life and the themes that emerge reliant to an archetypal critique. The labyrinth motif can be confusing, but if you learn the secret, you can pay a visit!
This talk was recorded at the Esalen Institute on November 25, 1983.