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Word Count: 791
THE PORTRAIT OF AN ARTIST AS A YOUNG MAN by James Joyce Considering the fact that the Portrait is a writing of a sort that the early reviewers had not encountered before it is understandable that Joyce was not praised by the critics while alive Recognising the literary greatness of this novel seemed an almost impossible task at the time of its publishing In a readers report for the publisher Duckworth Company one of the reviewers called Garnett admits that the book is ably written but needs revision because it is too discursive formless unrestrained and ugly things ugly words are too prominent The novel is too unconventional Garnett asserts and unless the author will use restraint and proportion he will not gain readers In contrast Ezra Pound found the Portrait well written and rare among the novels in the English Literature In his review in The Egoist he stated that Joyce had produced the nearest thing to Flaubertian prose that had ever been written in the English language On the other hand despite the fact that he vociferously praised the books value Pound had nothing to say about the novels content In spite of the confusion it caused at the time of its publishing four decades after Joyces death more than 7500 studies of the novel were published A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man is a Knstlerroman ie a novel that follows the life of an individual who wants to achieve greatness and refuses to accept the commonplace life It is a story about Stephen Dedalus and his three early life crisis which divide the novel into three parts First one describes the heros childhood his first days at school his maturing the development of religious doubts and awakening of strong but forbidden sexual desire The second part traces Stephens sins against the religious moral principles his first sexual experience consequently followed by the feeling of guilt and
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