Study Guide

A Confederacy of Dunces Chapter 14

By John Kennedy Toole

Chapter 14

  • Ignatius is miserable. His mother hounds him constantly and he is afraid that he will be hauled into court on fraud charges over the Abelman letter.
  • He's also worried that Mr. Levy will discover he lied and demand he be put in jail. Apparently Levy did not call to tell him all was well—which seems kind of mean since the resolution worked out so perfectly for him. But hey, it's a cruel world.
  • Mrs. Reilly decides at Santa's urging to call the Charity Hospital to come take Ignatius away to the psychiatric ward.
  • The decision is painful; Mrs. Reilly bids a tearful goodbye to Ignatius, arousing his suspicions.
  • After some investigation, he figures out what's going on; his mother has called the Charity Hospital to take him to the psychiatric ward.
  • He scampers to try to get out, but unfortunately he only has sixty cents to his name.
  • Suddenly Myrna appears, having driven all the way from New York; Ignatius stifles his desire to strangle her with her pigtail and makes nice.
  • He convinces her to take him with her at once, in part by telling her he finally understands her wisdom and sees that she's been right all along.
  • They pull away just as the Charity Hospital ambulance rolls up.
  • Ignatius wonders where Fortuna's wheel will take him next, and kisses Myrna's pigtail.