No banality, please

Jul 26th, 2014 | By | Category: Ireland

More than five hundred pages into James Joyce’s Ulysses: parts are incomprehensible, others seem to anticipate a magical realism that would become popular decades later. What is striking is the extraordinary use of language; dialogues where each phrase commands attention. Perhaps that is why Joyce so alarmed the church, it wasn’t just the content of the story, it was its power to command attention.

The church tends to prefer banality; perhaps it is safer, more controllable. The most banal moment I can remember was at the funeral of a neighbour. …