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Thread: Use of repetition

  1. #1
    The Poetic Warrior Dark Muse's Avatar
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    Use of repetition

    I have just recently finished reading this book, and I noticed that it seemed throughout the book there were several phrases or sentences that would be repeated more than once. For example, a sentence which was used at the beginning of one paragraph will then be restated in another paragraph, and some phrases were restated two or three times though there seemed to be no real rhyme or reason to how or when it was used. In some chapters it seemed to be used more often than others, and at times it would not be done again for several pages and than he would start to do it again nor am I certain of the significance of the phrases which were chosen for the repetition.

    If anyone can offer any insight, it would be appreciated.

    Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there, wondering, fearing, doubting, dreaming dreams no mortal ever dared to dream before. ~ Edgar Allan Poe

  2. #2
    seasonably mediocre Il Penseroso's Avatar
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    I would say, perhaps, that he's mimicing the interplay of memory, shaping and reshaping phrases and turning them as experience signals changes in consciousness.

    It's been some time since I've read it, and I didn't pick up on that the first time through, but I think it makes sense considering Joyce's later experimentation.
    and somehow a dog
    has taken itself & its tail considerably away
    into the mountains or sea or sky, leaving
    behind: me, wag.
    - John Berryman

  3. #3
    The Poetic Warrior Dark Muse's Avatar
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    Yes I could see where that would make sense. It seemed in the first chapter he was really heavy with the repetition, then seemed to kind of back off a bit from it, but still every now and than would start to use it again and toward the end it seemed to get a little more so, but still not as much as when the book started.

    Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there, wondering, fearing, doubting, dreaming dreams no mortal ever dared to dream before. ~ Edgar Allan Poe

  4. #4
    laudator temporis acti andave_ya's Avatar
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    Yeah, I noticed that too and thought it was kind of interesting. I thought maybe, because he had used it earlier it was stuck in his subconscious but I think Il Penseroso's comment made more sense.
    "The time has come," the Walrus said,
    "To talk of many things:
    Of shoes--and ships--and sealing-wax--
    Of cabbages--and kings--
    And why the sea is boiling hot--
    And whether pigs have wings."

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