“As they sat or stood in the sun, showing their dark hands and feet, they had a curiously lackadaisical, lazy, lousy look about them. It seemed their insides were concentrated in the act of immergence, of a new birth, as it were, from the raw, bleak wintry feelings of their souls to the world of warmth. The taint of the dark, narrow, dingy little prison cells of their one roomed homes lurked in them, however, even in the outdoor air.” (Untouchable, Anand, p. 27)
Not even the sun could entirely warm the Untouchables after being forced to live in an isolated, parallel world to the higher castes. Bakha’s friends and neighbors are cold physically and mentally from this abuse. Anand gives voice to the group’s consciousness in this example of indirect discourse.
“A strange thing happened to Paul. Suddenly he knew that he was apart from the people around him. Apart from the pain which they had unconsciously caused. Suddenly he knew that people saw, not attractiveness in his dark skin, but difference. Their stares, giving him to himself, filled something long empty within him, and were like green blades sprouting in his consciousness.”
Cane, Toomer, Bona and Paul, p. 104.
This example of indirect discourse is going on inside of Paul’s mind and it is a revelation about his identity. The Crimson Garden’s patrons have made him aware that he is judged foreign and “apart” from the white world. His student friends have treated him as an exotic being, Art actually trying to imitate him with his playing jazz piano. Art also questions his own identity because of his friendship with Paul. This is also a foreshadowing of the last paragraph of this story, when Paul must bare the weight of his otherness. He again has identity foisted on him by a manipulating white society.
“She sighed and leaned against him. I awakened and you weren’t here and then I heard someone coming in. I was terrified.’
Spade combed her red hair back from her face with his fingers and said: ‘I’m sorry, angel. I thought you’d sleep through it. Did you have the gun under your pillow all night?”
Dashiell Hammett, Maltese Falcon, Vintage Books, Chapter 10, p.94.
It’s probably true that Brigid O’Shaughnessy was terrified. But why with her lover and protector? She uses her body as a weapon and lies to Spade with every breath she takes including having the gun all night. At this point, Spade has searched her apartment and knows her story is false for at least the second time. He is gentle with her, probably loves her, but is not fooled for a minute. His morale code is airtight even among gangsters, felons, and women he loves. She has no morale code, trusts no one and even with Spade, keeps a gun under her pillow.
“What a lark! What a plunge! For so it had always seemed to her, when, with a little squeak of the hinges, which she could hear now, she had burst open the French windows and plunged at Bourton into the open air. How fresh, how calm, stiller than this of course, the air was in the early morning: like the flap of a wave, chill and sharp and yet (for a girl of eighteen as she then was) solemn, feeling as she did, standing there at the open window, that something awful was about to happen: looking at the flowers, at the trees with the smoke winding off them and the rooks rising, falling: standing and looking until Peter Walsh said, “Musing among the vegetables?”–‘”I prefer men to cauliflowers”–was that it…”
Virginia Woolf, Mrs. Dalloway (p.1 ).
In the previous paragraph Clarissa Dalloway, thinks about the men taking the doors off their hinges (indirect discourse) during the present. The only segway into her past is “a little squeak of the hinges” she remembers from the summer of her 18th year at Bourton, a childhood country home where she has a failed relationship with Peter Walsh, who in this same paragraph makes his first annoying remark about her preferring men to cauliflowers. And we are introduced to a key relationship in this novel and a place we will visit many times, Bourton. The transitions from different characters thoughts and switch in time are done sometimes mid sentence.
Valeri Drach Weidmann/September 30, 2023/Mrs. Dalloway
“Nothing stirred within his soul but a cold and cruel and loveless lust. His childhood was dead or lost and with it his soul capable of simple joys, and he was drifting amid life like the barren shell of the moon.”
Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, Joyce, Chapter 2, p.97
His growing up, his adolescent years has led him to a dark recking of his father’s choices, drunkenness and poverty for his family. He is embarrassed by his father’s behavior as they tour his old college and haunts.
Valeri Drach Weidmann/ September 15, 2023/ Judgements on his life especially his father, James Joyce, disillusionment
“This was the pang that had been sharpest during the last few years–the sense of ebbing time, of shrinking opportunity; and now he felt not so much that his last chance was going as that it was gone indeed.”
James, The Middle Years, p. 337
“Sense of ebbing time” and “shrinking opportunity”, do these phrases mean career as a writer are over or his very life. Is shrinking opportunity really the waning of his talent as a writer.
VDW/September 9, 2023/Henry James, theme, career past prime, fleeting life force