LUCKY JIM Essay Research Paper Tribulation and

9 September 2017

LUCKY JIM Essay, Research Paper

Trial and Comedy in Lucky Jim

Lawson Winder


Mrs. Wilson

Friday, November 22, 1996

Trial and Comedy in Lucky Jim

Despite bad lucks, comedy possesses the ability to promote one & # 8217 ; s temper in straitening or unhappy times. The sweet flavour comedy adds to life makes many state of affairss much more toothsome. In Kingsley Amis & # 8217 ; Lucky Jim, the Jim Dixon character is cast into unfavorable dealingss with other characters who make his being rather seeking. Jim & # 8217 ; s engagement with Margaret is marked by his desire to see it stop. His association with Professor Welch endlessly lands him in a disagreeable place. Furthermore, Jim does nil to amend this, and the reader becomes frustrated with Jim & # 8217 ; s inactivity, and his ready credence to allow things transport on as they are. However, Jim & # 8217 ; s extraordinary amusing sense continually lightens the badness of his quandary and makes populating with his jobs much easier.

Jim Dixon & # 8217 ; s relationship with Margaret is the beginning of considerable anxiousness and hurt ; yet, he dodges the demand to rectify this. Jim sees Margaret as a miss possessing & # 8220 ; minimum cuteness & # 8221 ; ( Amis, 1953, p. 105 ) , a individual who is unenjoyable to pass clip with, and whom he knows is manipulative. At the same clip, he feels compelled to go on seeing her. Although it is non clear, his behavior seems to be partially derived from a tragic sense that beautiful misss are non for him. Equally good, it seems to come from an unprecedented, yet baronial sense of responsibility combined with commiseration ; and a belief that he hasn & # 8217 ; t & # 8220 ; got the backbones to go forth her & # 8221 ; ( Amis, 1953, 201 ) . Basically, Jim lacks assurance. In observing Margaret & # 8217 ; s fraudulence, one observes from the origin of their friendly relationship, that Margaret is maneuvering Jim into something he is non cognizant he is being involved: & # 8220 ; It had seemed merely natural for a female lector to inquire a junior & # 8230 ; male colleague up to her topographic point for java, and no more civil to accept. Then all of a sudden he & # 8217 ; d go the adult male who was `going about & # 8217 ; with Margaret, and someway viing with this Catchpole & # 8221 ; ( Amis, 1953, p. 10 ) . Margaret & # 8217 ; s infliction of this rubric on Jim without his taking portion, demonstrates her cunning nature. In add-on, Margaret & # 8217 ; s incorporation of another adult male into the pageantry, who is purportedly in chase of Jim & # 8217 ; s rubric, is unquestionable grounds of Margaret & # 8217 ; s use of Jim. Then, at the Summer Ball, Carol Goldsmith affirms this sentiment: & # 8220 ; Throw her [ Margaret ] a life belt and she & # 8217 ; ll draw you under & # 8221 ; ( Amis, 1953, p.121 ) . Simply, Carol is stating that when Jim is & # 8220 ; civil to accept & # 8221 ; Margaret & # 8217 ; s invitations, he is puting himself up to be used, which is precisely what she will make,

she [ Margaret ] feigns sexual eagerness to lure, so denounce Jim & # 8230 ; she shows no understanding when he is in problem with the Welches and uses her cognition of his predicament to hale him & # 8230 ; and she exploits him by pull stringsing him into paying for everything when they go out, even though he can non afford it and she can & # 8221 ; ( Salwak, 1992, 27 ) .

Furthermore, it is highly frustrating in that Dixon makes no effort at liberating himself from this arduous relationship, which he recognizes as counter, & # 8220 ; Dixon fought hard to drive away the sentiment that, both as actress and book author, she [ Margaret ] was making instead good & # 8221 ; ( Amis, 1953, 76 ) . Jim notes with preciseness that Margaret & # 8217 ; s behavior is theatrical, and, is non natural, but planned in front of clip to procure a certain response ; nevertheless, he chooses to disregard this. To do affairs even worse for Jim, the clip he spends with Margaret is ever dreary and displeasing, and as a consequence, he dreads brushs with her. For illustration, he is frequently & # 8220 ; debaring his attending from the idea that Margaret would be at that place & # 8221 ; ( Amis, 1953, p.204 ) . Despite his apprehensivenesss about meeting with Margaret, Dixon once more makes no attempt to alleviate himself of her familiarity, & # 8220 ; in a assortment of tones, [ Jim ] recognizes, but fails to move on, a disagreement between what he ought to make or wants to make and what he in fact does & # 8221 ; ( McDermott, 1989, p.63 ) . As a repeating subject throughout the book, Jim & # 8217 ; s failure to take action against Margaret is really upsetting and leaves the reader feeling commiseration for him.

Much like Jim & # 8217 ; s engagement with Margaret, his association with Professor Welch is really discouraging. Ironically, Jim does non desire to learn for Welch, yet, he is endlessly seeking to turn out to him he is fit for the place by executing boring responsibilities. Much like the Margaret scenario, Jim & # 8217 ; s motive for this behavior is indiscernible. However, his behavior may quite conceivably come from a belief that by going an academic, he can procure the regard of others, and therefore, raise his assurance. There is besides a noticeable intimation of self-deprecation stemming from Jim & # 8217 ; s non seting an terminal to the beginning of his defeats. Furthermore, he hates Welch for his dull company and backbreaking petitions. Dixon feels, for illustration, that by staying & # 8220 ; present and witting while Welch talked about concerts & # 8221 ; ( Amis, 1953, p. 8 ) he can procure his teaching-post. Unfortunately, these narratives are miserably dreary and are highly uninteresting: & # 8220 ; Dixon is bored non merely by Welch & # 8217 ; s history but by the concert itself. He has non of class the nervus to state so, and suppresses his fury & # 8221 ; ( McDermott, 1989, p. 55 ) . Elaborating on Dixon & # 8217 ; s disapproval of holding to blandish Welch, McDermott besides points out that Jim does nil to liberate himself of this load because of a deficiency of assurance. Similarly, in order to derive favorable standing with Welch, Jim writes an essay which he tries to hold published. In remembering the documents title for Welch, Dixon reveals a strong disfavor for the work his place requires: & # 8220 ; It was a perfect rubric, in that it crystallized the article & # 8217 ; s fussing inanity, its funeral parade of yawn-enforcing facts, the pseudo-light it threw on non-problems & # 8221 ; ( Amis, 1953, p. 14 ) . Herein lies the nucleus of his quandary ; Jim subjects himself to Welch so that he may achieve a occupation he doesn & # 8217 ; t even bask making. At other times, the Professor, employs cunning equivocation ( a head facet of his personality ) in order to avoid allowing Jim know whether or non he will in fact be able to set down the instruction occupation he is prosecuting. Jim & # 8217 ; s uncertainness about his calling coupled with the agencies by which he must vouch it and his really disfavor for the work, leave him in a unstable psychological balance. That is to state, Jim no longer wants to experience that the dirt he puts up with from Welch may perchance be in vain. Therefore, Dixon goes to Welsh seeking stableness in cognizing whether, following his provisional career, he will be employed by the college or non.

In a frustrating show, the Professor elusively denies Jim the satisfaction: “All the clip he’d thought he was conveying the affair of his probation to a caput he’d simply been a winkle on the pin of Welch’s equivocation technique” ( Amis, 1953, p. 86 ) . Here, the “infuriatingly vague and evasive” ( Gardner, 1981, p. 27 ) Welch succeeds in evading Jim, therefore doing Jim’s uncertainness to go on. Dixon so reveals a little weakness in making a decision and discloses Welch’s function in doing his life hard. Welch is besides an counter force in that he gives Jim humble undertakings to execute, which bit off at his self-respect. Not being “able to pass any clip puttering about looking things up in the library himself” ( Amis, 1953, p.173 ) , the Professor pompously assumes Jim does. He so begins naming several topics which Dixon is expected to research for a talk Welch is to give. Much to his ain irritation, Jim does as is requested of him, though “not without some loss of clip and integrity” ( Amis, p. 173 ) . Reverses like this and other Welch exasperations are extremely frustrating and detering for hapless Jim. These reverses cause Jim feelings of ineffectiveness, while they strip him of some self-respect.

Not defying that Jim & # 8217 ; s association with Welch and Margaret is thwarting and impeding, Dixon & # 8217 ; s humor and disposition toward the absurd aptly counter the cheerless consequence of his Margaret-Welch quandary. In one case, Jim is go toing an highly deadening & # 8220 ; arty get-together & # 8221 ; ( Amis, p.23 ) at Welch & # 8217 ; s place. Following the inordinate imbibing of the eventide, Jim smokes a coffin nail and coaxes himself to kip on one of Mrs. Welch & # 8217 ; s guest beds. Upon rousing the undermentioned forenoon, his caput pounding, Dixon discovers that his coffin nail has burned several goggling holes in the sheet, branded black an oriental carpet, and charred the surface of a dark tabular array. Urgently non desiring to squeal what he has done, Jim plots to hide the incident. To get down with, he makes the bed with the Burnss reversed so they are hidden at the terminal. Then, he stuffs the burned part of the carpet under a heavy chair on the other side of the room. For the coda, he scoops the tabular array up in his weaponries, elans fanatically down the hall, stops at, and darts through an seemingly fresh door, into a little room where he hides the tabular array amongst an array of littered debris. In contrast to the drab get-together, this hideous incident lightens up the temper, taking the bite out of Jim & # 8217 ; s unstable state of affairs: & # 8220 ; Jim & # 8217 ; s gustatory sensation for the absurd is absolutely accommodated by the polite restraints of his societal environment & # 8230 ; .his amusing energy propel [ s ] us through a societal universe which without his presence would be everyday & # 8221 ; ( Bradford, 1989, p. 33 ) . At another minute, Jim exhibits farther pathetic behaviors in observing the completion of a arduous undertaking that Welch had assigned to him:

With a long gabble burp, Dixon got up from the chair where he & # 8217 ; d been composing & # 8230 ; and did his ape imitation all round the room. With one arm set at the cubitus so that the fingers brushed the axilla, the other crooked in the air so that the interior of the forearm ballad across the top of his caput, he wove with set articulatio genuss and hunched, swaying shoulders across to the bed, upon which he jumped up and down a few times, chattering to himself ( Amis, p. 205 ) .

Initially, the reader is merely relieved that Jim has finished his assignment, yet with the add-on of this slap-stick soliloquy, the minute becomes a delicious going from the irritations of Jim & # 8217 ; s universe. He besides vents annoyance through off-handed, amusing ideas he has while in the company of Welch and Margaret. For illustration, as Jim is watching Welch talk about a concert, his head floating between several unrelated ideas and the impression that he despises Welch & # 8217 ; s company, it occurs to him that he should take action:

He pretended to himself that he & # 8217 ; vitamin D pick up his professor round the waist, squash the furred gray-blue vest against him to throw out the breath, run to a great extent with him up the stairss, along the corridor to the Staff Cloak-room, and immerse the too-small pess in their capless places into a lavatory basin, drawing the stopper one time, twice and once more, stuffing the oral cavity with toilet paper ( Amis, 1953, pp. 9-10 ) .

Although the thought is ne’er realized, this hysterical aside allows Jim to digest Welch with a certain grade of calm: & # 8220 ; In order to keep self-respect & # 8230 ; [ Jim ] resorts to a amusing phantasy universe in which he can show fury or abhorrence towards & # 8230 ; Welch ( Salwak, 1992, p. 65 ) . Likewise, in disbursement clip with Margaret, Dixon illustrates the curative nature of his humourous fantastical onslaughts. In a scene where Margaret is trying to pull strings Jim, one perceives that in his screaming mental effusions, there is a calming consequence:

& # 8220 ; `Do you hate me, James? & # 8217 ; she said.

Dixon wanted to run at her and tip her backwards in the chair, to do a deafening rude noise in her face, to force a bead up her olfactory organ.

`How make you intend? & # 8217 ; he asked & # 8221 ; ( Amis, 1953, 156 ) .

One notices the crisp contrast between the ludicrous animus of Dixon & # 8217 ; s ideas and his smooth verbal response instantly. This is Jim roll uping himself by agencies of let go ofing mounting ill will, while maintaining it all contained in his caput. Jim & # 8217 ; s humour allows him a feeling of jubilance, which is really calming.

In Lucky Jim, Jim Dixon is a adult male who is exposed to people who are everlastingly torturing him with assorted assaults runing from use to hideous demands to outright obtuseness. Furthermore, for ill-defined ground & # 8217 ; s, Jim does non experience he can change this state of affairs, leting them to go on as they are. Intelligibly, this is really demoralizing. Nevertheless, Dixon possesses a salvaging grace, his sense of temper. Compensating for Jim & # 8217 ; s dissatisfying relationships, his gags, and the farcical things he gets into, give Jim a manner in which he can cover with the jobs in his life. In fact, the comedy makes even the most distressing minutes diverting. This property allows Jim to populate more contentedly in malice of legion set dorsums. Comparably, this holds true for any individual. What better manner to get by with hardship than a strong sense of temper.


Amis, K. ( 1953 ) . Lucky jim. Toronto: Penguin Books Canada Ltd.

Bradford, R. ( 1989 ) . Kingsley amis- ( modern fiction ) . Great Britain: Edward Arnold.

Gardner, P. ( 1981 ) . Kingsley amis. Boston: Twayne Publishers.

McDermott, J. ( 1989 ) . Kingsley amis: an English moralist. New York: St. Martin & # 8217 ; s Press.

Salwak, D. ( 1992 ) . Kingsley amis: a modern novelist. Great Britain Barnes & A ; Baronial Books.

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