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Feb 2, 2019 11:06

3. I think that the end of the “Dead” looks like a Middle Ages Triumph of the Death. Triumphs were a literary genre that showed the reality of this world as submitted to Time, Eternity, Love and other metaphysical entities. The description of the epiphany, its climatic movement resembles the ancient medieval parades where the Death came without being possible to stop. The metaphor he uses is that of the snow falling. The snow falls everywhere covering literally everything, it is unstoppable and represents the process of freezing of the all Ireland (metonymic for the reality) is subject to undergo. The end of the short-story is a sort of oxymoron, it is the raise of the dead, the movement (of return) of something that is usually considered to be gone for ever. Therefore reality is presented to be as different as a mere addition of present fact but as the harmonic wholeness of something mysterious. In the “Portrait” Joyce describes beauty as the discover of the parts as a whole and the whole as constituted by parts. Then he adds the “fading coal”, the mysterious enchantment of heart with which we apprehend it. In the “Dead” this enchantment of heart is the return of the Death. The whole story is filled with hints of death and the emergence of something of uncanny . The sisters family name is Morkan, which is similar to the German word stays for death. But many are the details the announces the presence of the Death. It is the entire old society with all its system of values that it is decaying and Gabriel is the one who escort it to its final trip.
Once alone with his wife, he has a sight of relief. Reality is collapsing but has spared for himself his marriage and his wife. Despite all, he is ready to celebrate again his union with her. Unfortunately the collapse of reality and the victory of Death emerges before he can enjoy the moment of loneliness with his wife.
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