A Little Cloud By James Joyce Essay

1008 Words May 4th, 2016 null Page
Hartman suggests that ‘it is generally the task of the critic to uncover euphemism in any sphere: literary, psychological, political.’ It is in this psychological sphere that this essay will investigate ‘A Little Cloud’ (1914) by James Joyce. It will argue that the text reflects key aspects of Freudian theory, and will provide evidence from both the text, and wider supporting research.
The primary distinction made by psychoanalytic theory is between the ‘self’ and the ‘subject’, although it is notoriously difficult to differentiate between the two. Freud introduced the idea of the ‘self’ being split between two states: the conscious, and the unconscious. Bennett and Royle support this, suggesting that

‘Literature, like art more generally, has always been concerned with aspects of what can be called the unconscious or […] other: it is and has always been centrally concerned with dreams and fantasy, hallucinations and visions, madness, trance, and other kinds of impersonality or absences of self.’

Alongside these manifestations, Freud suggests that the unconscious mind can be separated into the ‘id’, the ‘ego’, and the ‘superego’. The ‘id’ is the first component of the unconscious that is developed. Present from birth, it is driven by the ‘pleasure principle’ which strives for immediate gratification of all desires. In ‘A Little Cloud’, Little Chandler exemplifies this notion, as it has been suggested that he is inherently childish, both physically: ‘he was called Little…

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