Caliban

Looking at Stephen peering into his cracked mirror, Mulligan exclaims, "The rage of Caliban at not seeing his face in a mirror . . . If Wilde were only alive to see you!" He is alluding to the preface to The Picture of Dorian Gray (1891), where Oscar Wilde defines two great movements in 19th century literature in terms of the reactions of the reading populace: “The nineteenth century dislike of Realism is the rage of Caliban seeing his own face in a glass. / The nineteenth century dislike of Romanticism is the rage of Caliban not seeing his own face in a glass.”

JH 2011

Oscar Wilde, photograph taken in 1882 by Napoleon Sarony. Source: Wikimedia Commons.