Ulysses

The Function of Parody in Ulysses

The word "parody" comes from the Latin parodia, meaning "burlesque song or poem", but it has come to refer to any artistic composition in which "the characteristic themes and the style of a particular work, author, etc., are exaggerated or applied to an inappropriate subject for the purposes of ridicule." Parody is used throughout Ulysses both as a form of comedy and as a critique. In the "Cyclops" episode, parody functions as a critique of the grand narrative, specifically in terms of history and the discourse of the nineteenth century. Parody is further used in order to subvert existing structures and hierarchies, as is apparent through the elements of Bakhtin's conception of the Carnivale, which are present in the episode. In "Nausicaa", Joyce parodies aspects of popular culture, particularly romance fiction and the censorship debate. This technique serves to highlight the relationship between language and consciousness, as well as the way in which discourses are constructed and interact with each other. By using parody, Joyce appears to be critiquing aspects of society and questioning the manner in which language is used to convey meaning.

Parody in "Cyclops"...

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