Comparative Survey, Descriptive Research

  Comparative survey research is a type of descriptive survey where it aims to compare the status of two or more variable, institutions, strategies etc. This technique often uses multiple disciplines in one study.This does not only compare different groups but also same group over time.Few points are to be kept in mind before starting the comparative survey. ·        Comparison Points -The research should be very clear regarding the points to be compared. This can also be identified through review of literature and experience of experts. ·        Assumption of Similarities -  One has to be clear about the similarities the two variable hold. If the researcher do not find this there is no point of comparison. Criteria of Comparison - The researcher has to identify the criteria of comparison keeping in mind the fairness and objectivity. Appropriate tools has to be identified for measurement of criterion variables. Comparative survey research is carried on when the researcher cannot

Evaluate A Portrait Of The Artist As A Young Man as Stream of Consciousness Novel

Stream of Consciousness is a phrase coined by psychologist William James in his research work The Principles of Psychology (1890) to describe the flow of thoughts of the waking mind. According to him the intervention of time cannot break the continuity of consciousness. It flows like a stream of river. The writers of this group relate all mental experience of their characters be they pleasant or unpleasant, trivial or significance without any restrain. The novels of Dorothy Richardson, James Joyce and Virginia Woolf are often seen as examples of this method.

James Joyce one of the greatest novelist started his career with realistic pictures of life in his works but with special emphasis on the exploration of the state of human consciousness i.e. adopting the stream of consciousness technique. He employed this in his first novel A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (1916) and thus, used more extensively in Ulysses (1922).

 James Joyce’s A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man is a landmark in the history of the English novel, though few readers can really enjoy it.  The novel deals both with growing up and with the early life of an artist. The theme being abstract i.e. the development of mind or soul. Here, Joyce delves deep into the human consciousness and specialises in recording thoughts, ideas, feelings, emotions, recollecting memories, fantasies, speculations, and anticipations etc of the human mind. In brief, he deals with the inner working of the mind and very little with external action. In this book, Joyce describes his own development through the fictional personality of Stephen Dedalus from early childhood till the time of early manhood. Stephen is shown as passing through a succession of influences which exert claims upon the conscience and outlook: family, academic learning, sex and the Catholic faith. In describing and analysing, Stephen’s subjective world Joyce uses, several times in the course of this book, the technique of what is known as Stream of Consciousness or Interior Monologue. 

The technique is in evidence at many places in the novel more so in the opening and the closing pages.  The opening section of Ch-1 contains the thoughts of Baby Stephen. The reader is rushed back and forth through sudden disruptions. The story of the moocow is linked in Stephen’s consciousness with Byrne’s sweetshop. A memory of his father leads to memory of his mother. Associations lead us to Eileen. The coldness of the bed and its wetness are all part of associative processes as are the smells exuded by Stephen’s parents.

This technique continues in the second section of Ch-1 when Stephen is on the football field. He is in the midst of a scrimmage and is thinking of going home for the holidays. He longs for the warmth of the room where he has pasted at his desk the number of days still remaining between then and the holidays. His thoughts on the field move in quick succession from his cold hands to the various meanings of the word ‘belt’, to nasty expressions used by the boys, to his mother’s not to speak to the rough boys and so on.

The second chapter again is a mixture of objective and subjective writing. There is for instance the passage, in which Stephen is described as recalling,

his own equivocal position in Belvedere, a free boy, a leader afraid of his own authority, proud and sensitive and suspicious.

The same technique is used in the description of his failure to establish a close relationship with his family and of the fierce longings of his heart which derives him into the arms of a prostitute. Most of the third chapter is objectively written but the reaction of Stephen to Father Arnall’s sermons on the subject of Hell is described through the stream of consciousness technique. The terrifying vision of damnation which follows those sermons and prompts Stephen’s confession is also described in accordance with this technique.

The narrative matter of stream of consciousness technique predominates throughout the fourth chapter, which is highly appropriate to the subject-matter. The chapter records the grand turning point in Stephen’s spiritual life and the action here is either subjective or carries an entirely subjective significance.

The fifth chapter hardly makes any use of this technique till the very end. The diary entries at the end are an excellent illustration of stream of consciousness technique. The entries contain a jumble of thoughts recorded just as they came to Stephen’s mind. Though the thoughts, could have been expressed in phrases and rules of grammar.

Thus, James Joyce uses the stream of consciousness technique in this novel to reveal the working of Stephen’s mind but less extensively as compared to his other novels.                      


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