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252

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MERICA

hand and dialogizes his predecessors and contemporaries on

the other. The orators in Crawford’s office

the barrister

O’Molloy and the academic MacHugh in particular

are

somewhat reminiscent of Daniel O’Connell, a lawyer and

renowned orator, whose forceful speeches incited audiences

and helped bring about the success of Catholic Emancipation.

Unlike O’Molloy’s and MacHugh’s empty talks, O’Connell’s

oratorical and organizational skills did exercise tremendous

power, but there were limits: the Liberator acquiesced on the

government’s prohibition against meetings for fear of risking

bloodshed, and this submission, as mentioned before, resulted

in a decline in his influence and the failure of the Repeal

movement. O’Connell’s case suggests that the effectiveness of

words is conditional on their being delivered to the public and

inspiring action. Deprived of either of those conditions, words

are rendered empty and powerless, as were O’Connell’s

speeches delivered outside of the rallies. The Dubliners’

utterances in the newspaper office lack the necessary

conditions to be effective; their forceful speeches, repeating

others’ words in a windy locale occupied by a gang of flatulent

underachievers, are therefore reduced to empty rhetoric, and

have no practical effect. O’Connell’s advocacy of Jewish

emancipation, moreover, is replaced by these Dubliners’

anti-Semitism, as their hostility toward Bloom demonstrates.

Despite Joyce’s likely appreciation of O’Connell’s espousal of

Jewish emancipation and the abolition of slavery, he would

have certainly frowned at the Liberator’s sectarian inclination,

for his idea of Catholic Ireland would have expelled the

Anglo-Irish like Parnell from their homeland. Not only do the

orators in the

Telegraph

office remind us of O’Connell, but

Professor MacHugh’s acclaim for Taylor’s speech is evocative

of Douglas Hyde, also a professor and champion of the revival

of Gaelic. The representations of Crawford and other

pressmen, furthermore, recall the journalistic intellectuals, the