by James Joyce
Ulysses Sex Quotes
How we cite our quotes: Citations follow this format: (Chapter.Paragraph), except for the "Circe" episode, which is (Chapter.Line) and the "Penelope" episode, which is (Chapter.Page). We used the Vintage International edition published in 1990.
O, I so want to be a mother. (15.374)
Here, Bloom imagines that he is on trial for lewd conduct, and that Dr. Dixon has just announced (in his imaginary court) that Bloom is pregnant with eight children. A few lines later, Bloom actually gives birth. What does the book seem to say about men's relation to the sexual process? Are men envious of motherhood and the pains of birth? Do they feel estranged from the creation process? If you know anything about Freud, how does this turn the good doctor on his head?
"Henceforth you are unmanned and mine in earnest, a thing under the yoke. Now for your punishment frock. You will shed your male garments, you understand, Ruby Cohen? and don the shot silk luxuriously rustling over head and shoulders and quickly too." (15.607)
Here, we get a glimpse of Bloom's masochistic fantasy while he is in Bella Cohen's brothel. Bloom imagines Ms. Cohen like an evil circus master. She has become masculine and he has become feminine and she is abusing him and treating him like a prostitute. How strange is Bloom's fantasy? Meaning, does everyone think about what it would be like to be the opposite sex and just not talk about it? What does Bloom's masochistic fantasy say about his own sexual confidence? Is it just a case of him empathizing with the prostitutes?
(Hoarsely, sweetly rising to her throat.) "O! Weeshwashtkissima pooishthnapoohuck!"
(His eyes wildly dilated, clasps himself.) "Show! Hide! Show! Plough her! More! Shoot!" (15.821-822)
Here, we are in Bloom's masochistic fantasy in Bella Cohen's brothel. He is imagining Boylan and Molly having sex, and he is outside cheering them on. How is this dream/nightmare a way for Bloom to deal with the fact of his wife's affair? Is it further confirmation of his impotence or does it somehow show an effort to be involved in the sexual act, if only peripherally?