Farrell, James T. (1904 - 1979).
W o r k
- born in Chicago: portrayed the Chicago of his youth
< the material and moral poverty of slums, the mechanised religious faith, and the political parties
- sympathised with Marxism x but: refused the simplifying pattern of a proletarian novel
- considered himself a social naturalist: appreciated the European naturalism (E. Zola), continued the tradition of T. Dreiser
- used a telling detail, a frequent repetition of motifs, and irony x sympathy at the same time
- employed a raw, cruel, and violent language = the cruelty of life
- his especially Irish Chicago resembled to some extend J. Joyce’s Dubliners
‘The Studs Lonigan Trilogy’:
> Young Lonigan (1932), The Young Manhood of Studs Lonigan (1934), and Judgement Day (1935)
- a breakdown of the values of Irish Catholicism becoming useless in the materialistic age
- Lonigan = a product and a victim of Chicago: deprived of his religious faith and culture, becomes a drunkard and thief, and dies of a heart attack at the age of 29
‘The Danny O’Neill Tetralogy/Pentalogy’ (the last novel added a decade later):
- O’Neill = an atheistic journalist and writer <=> the author himself
- rises from poverty to the position of power x Lonigan
- becomes a conservative writer at the end
"MacNamara, the pot-bellied cop, came along, twirling his club. He intruded to halt the punishment. They told him Stein had spit on the flag. Stein, stuttering and tearful, denied the accusation. MacNamara asked him his name. Stein replied meekly. The cop said you could expect anything from one with a name like that, kicked his tail, and told him to get home".
From The Young Manhood of Studs Lonigan (1934).
(Photo: Chicago Tribune com).
AuthorJames T(homas) Farrell. (1904 - 1979). American.
WorkNovelist. Short story writer. Author of portrayals of Irish immigrants in Chicago.
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