By Jean Perrot
Researching Lamb apartment in 1896, Henry James fell less than the spell of the phrases of Biblical «Wisdom» written at the tower clock of Rye parochial church: «For our time is a really shadow that passeth away». From the younger bachelor’s «angry vow» to «live for himself and switch the most important on his middle» in Watch and Ward (1871) to the decisive The flip of the Screw (1898) and to the ultimate «turning the tables» on «an lousy agent» of the Apollo Gallery within the nightmare of A Small Boy and Others (1913), this sophisticated «ambassador» of yankee letters, sharing many of the idiosyncrasies of Sacher Masoch and Gustave Flaubert - Jean-Paul Sartre’s «Idiot of the kin» - waged a beautiful struggle opposed to neurosis for the mastery of his craft. This examine explores the «gems» that spangle the «carpet» of his prose. The latter tricks at a mystery christology and shines with the need to struggle in a different way the fashionable Romains de l. a. decadence depicted in Thomas Couture’s recognized portray. the parable of the Twins encouraged via James’s dating together with his brother William ultimately led him to think like «the inheritor of all of the ages». Burning a few letters to guard his privateness, the expatriate author (1843-1916) built his œuvre to proportion the sky of the literary global Pleiades, and located everlasting relaxation less than the vaults of Westminster Abbey
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Extra info for Henry James''s Enigmas : Turning the Screw of Eternity?
H. James, Portraits of Places 119. H. James, Portraits of Places 90. Deciphering Europe: Landscape and the Art of Fiction 31 quite too well furnished with entertainments of their own […] they are people 36 of fortune, and are naturally independent of communistic pleasures. ” The sense of privacy makes things all the more difficult for a welcome that would confer all its importance to an intercourse controlled by the concern for strict decorum. The idea of conviviality, and the sharing of pleasures it can offer to the sentimental traveller, is therefore a rather complex issue, bringing many inextricably linked factors into play: the importance placed on nationality, the account made by the observer of a particular social group, and the hierarchy that classes the various values of a certain society.
The manor at Flickerbridge, with its heavy layers of memories, embodies the antithesis of modern absurdity, as “something absolutely special, an old house untouched, untouchable, indescribable, an old corner such as one didn’t believe existed…77 There is no doubt that at the time James was writing this text, he was also enjoying the calm of his little garden and of the Rye “manor house,” a less prestigious residence, but just as isolated in the peace of the English countryside. There he could reflect with detachment on the hustle and bustle of Parisian life, or on the restlessness of the London scene.
69 H. James, The Golden Bowl 141. 68 46 Henry James’s Enigmas As Maggie and Amerigo’s relationship develops in The Golden Bowl, Mr Verver is a widower, and the narrator, on the contrary, sees his newfound passion as a collector as an authentic transfer: in his desire to create American City, the museum-town in the United States where the “spoils” of Europe could be gathered, Mr Verver masks his initial taste for collecting with a kind-hearted, impartial nationalism. This calling is determined by the refinement of his appetite for objects.