What we are about to study is an extract from the novel The Brooklyn Follies, written by Paul Auster and published in 2005. Here, we are at the beginning of the novel, where Nathan and Tom are having lunch and talking about Tom's activities. We may wonder in what ways the passage is significant to the whole novel. When Tom's mother, June, died of a stroke, there were several changes: it was something we can call a "family Diaspora". Indeed, Nathan didn't keep in touch with his family and lose sight of his nephew, Tom. He also divorced from Edith. That is the reason why Tom associates Rachel to his "ex-cousin" and Nathan's "ex-daughter".
[...] To continue, we are going to study Tom's past ambitions. In the Chapter Nathan defines him as a “hero” and says “he was a great student meant to achieve great things”. He used to study literature and wanted to teach at university. He wrote a thesis on Thoreau and Poe but he got “stuck with the dissertation” as he says l.25 which resulted in his dropping out of school. We might create a link between the title of the chapter and Tom and Nathan‘s destiny. [...]
[...] Paul Auster, The Brooklyn Follies Farewell to the court (Chap. What we are about to study is an extract from the novel The Brooklyn Follies, written by Paul Auster and published in 2005. Here, we are at the beginning of the novel, Nathan and Tom are having lunch and talking about Tom's activities. We can wonder in what ways is the passage significant of the whole novel? To answer that question, we will see first that the characters are concentrating on the now and then Tom's past ambitions. [...]
[...] They both want to move and focus on “the now” which symbolises the present. By changing their names, they bring to the fore their desire for a new departure. By the way, changes are always present in the novel, it's a recurrent theme. For example, Harry Brightman changed his name. He used to be called Dunkel. Whatever, after that, we can comment the sentence “post past age of Glass and Wood” l.42. Auster is playing on words and that's a reference to the way time passes. [...]
[...] “He is a person without a clue”. About Nathan, he says “I lay down my sword” that symbolises I give up, probably because of his cancer, his social life associates to a disaster . In fact, they faced difficulties, surrendered and had to start over. They are rebuilding a new life. At the end of the passage, we can read Sir Raleigh's quatrain which is an illustration of both Nathan and Tom's past hopes. “Truthless dreams” refers to what Tom failed, “Joys expired” echo the fact that they do not enjoy their lives anymore. [...]
[...] And sorrow after all is the only thing you feel, reference to their feeling of missing their life . To finish, we might create a link with the title of the next chapter: Purgatory. The purgatory is a place between hell and heaven that permits to erase your sins. This idea is connected to a sense of redemption and also the catharsis. It permits them to make the transition between their past and their future. As a conclusion, we could say this 4th passage is significant of the whole novel. [...]
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