12-1 lecture Gaiman

12-1 lecture Gaiman - When I ended last time, I was talking...

Info iconThis preview shows pages 1–4. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

Unformatted text preview: When I ended last time, I was talking about the Marquis de Carabas, and about the way that this figure is key for a couple of reasons:--he raises uneasy questions about loyalty--even though we find out—in a very grisly way, through his torture, murder, and reanimation, that he is not the traitor among Door’s group--we are perturbed by questions of what about him is actually reliable--does anything determine loyalty in London Below other than being successfully bought ? (--what I was saying last time: the people who boast most about their professionalism, doing the job for which they’re hired, are Vandemar and Croup) (--we see eventually how this ends up with Hunter, where her desire to be best at one thing is what turns her traitor) Here’s what Jenifer D’Elia says: “Of all the characters that Richard encounters, the Marquis is the most reliable in that he cannot be relied upon except where it serves his best interests. Still, it is this example of what an Undersider should be if he wants to survive that Richard has to learn from.” Do we believe this? I’m not sure we do: I’d argue that although what she says about the Marquis’s pattern of reliability may be true --(though in whose interest does he take himself to V & C’s? only “his own” if we see him going above and beyond in Door’s service as earning his “favor”)-- this is not what Richard actually learns from him. As I suggested at the end of last time, what he learns has to do with the other way in which the Marquis is key—he reminds us that the city has been perennially seen as the site of self-reinvention because of its size, its diversity, its multiplicity of opportunities. The Marquis is like a parody—a self-parody—of this ideal (Dick Whttington/the Marquis—men with cats): he reinvents himself in the name of an invention--another sign that the way in which men are “self-made” in the upper world is itself a kind of arbitrary fiction, a kind of assumed importance (think about Stockton, Jessica’s boss)--but the self-transformation in London Below is nevertheless real: it’s just not the things that show that are the most important--transforms himself into a brave man—he baits V & C—though his swashbuckling and air of condescension are unchanged--when they’re being held hostage at the end, both he and Richard tell Door to resist—but even the way he does so is characteristic: “I matter very much.” (326)--when they survive and are being looked after by the Black Friars, he manages “to make being pushed around in a wheelchair a romantic and swashbuckling thing to do” (338) It’s in his self-invention and transformation, I think, that the Marquis is a model for Richard:...
View Full Document

This note was uploaded on 06/14/2011 for the course ENGL 283 taught by Professor Geiskes during the Fall '08 term at South Carolina.

Page1 / 8

12-1 lecture Gaiman - When I ended last time, I was talking...

This preview shows document pages 1 - 4. Sign up to view the full document.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Ask a homework question - tutors are online