Self Versus Other Why Spencer Brydons Tragic End Is Doomed in The Jolly Corner毕业论文

 2021-04-02 11:04

摘 要





The Jolly Corner, a short ghost story by Henry James, is a work featured by psychological realism in writing style. The psychological development of the protagonist, Spencer Brydon, is the major impetus of the plot. In order to be recognized, Brydon endeavors all his life to create a lofty “other” image for himself, only to find it is constantly assaulted by “the ghost”, which symbolizing his inner reality. Based on the clash between self and other interpreted in Jacques Lacan’s “The Mirror Stage”, this thesis will prove why Spencer Brydon’s life-long pursuit of identification is destined to be impeded by his excessive self-expectancy and paucity of internal and external knowledge.

Key words: Henry James; The Jolly Corner; The Mirror Stage;



  1. Introduction 1
  2. Demonstration 3
    1. The limited knowledge of the external world. 3
      1. Early assimilating process 3
      2. Stereotypes of the artists 4
      3. Feeling at a loss back at hometown. 5
    2. The excessive expectancy of self 7
      1. Painful alienating moment 7
      2. Lack of self-perception and self-reliance 9
      3. Imaginary existence versus the real image of the ghost 10
    3. The ingrained fear of inner reality 11
      1. Symbolic function of the ghost 11
      2. Pretending to be safe under the cloak of self-deception 13
  3. Conclusion 14

Acknowledgment 15

Works Cited. 16

Bibliography 17


Self Versus Other: Why Spencer Brydon’s Tragic End is Doomed in The Jolly Corner


Henry James (1843-1916), as an American modernist novelist living at the turning point of the 20th century, working for the style of critical realism.Writing mostly of the upper class of American society, he pursued an “imaginative” treatment of reality, or to say, psychological realism. Different from many traditional writers who attached great importance to story and plot, Henry James focused more upon the elements that label novels as the production of Humanitarian period, i.e. he was concerned about the development of characters’ inner reality and emphasized that it’s the main impetus of the plot.

Researchers home and abroad have attached great attention to Henry James’s novels for hundreds of years. The multidimensional researches of foreign academic researchers are mainly conducted from feminism, narrative ethics and psycho-analysis. As for The Jolly Corner, a short ghost story written in James’s later phase, the foreign researchers have acquired great insights in analyzing. Terry W. Thompson conducted several researches upon the short story. He made brief analysis of the plot and main characters in “James’s The Jolly Corner”. He probed into the theme of the story in “A Rip Van Winkle For Gilded Age: Spencer Brydon in The Jolly Corner” and “A Compass Rose in Henry James’s The Jolly Corner”. He briefly compared the theme and plot of the story with The Trys in “A Sense of Something Lost: The Unlived Jamesian Life in the Algernon Blackwood’s The Trys” and briefly analyzed the protagonist’s anxiety and curiosity towards the unknown from the angle of psycho-analysis. What’s more, D. R. Burleson analyzed the image of the protagonists and their relationship in “Bridegroom and Bride in The Jolly Corner ”. Earnest Tuveson critiqued upon the surrealism of the story in “The Jolly Corner: A Fable of Redemption”.

The domestic researchers, however, merely focus upon the writing techniques,

您需要先支付 80元 才能查看全部内容!立即支付