What attitude does the author take toward the more sentimental scenes in the book, like the anecdote of Toby and the fly, or the story of Le Fever?
Walter learns of it from Obadiah.
He takes a look and then retires to his library to consult the classical authorities on the value of circumcision. Apropos of Toby's question of what a "polemic divine" is, Yorick tells the story of Gymnast and Tripet; Toby and Trim do not understand.
Walter decides to read to the assembled a "short chapter or two" of his Tristra-paedia; Toby and Trim settle back to suffer since, as Walter says, "The first thirty pages.
When Walter quotes Justinian's "The son ought to pay her [his mother] respect," Yorick says that he can read that in the Catechism.
He raises his voice and gives the command: Going on to the next chapter, Walter discourses on health: Yorick is spared the proof, but not the reader: Tristram describes his father's proofs and reasoning, how he built his theory on the rubble that he made of Francis Bacon's hypothesis.
Walter continues with his interpretation of radical heat and radical moisture "an oily and balsamous substance" and their importance to the child; his conclusion is simple: Their interpretation of "radical heat and radical moisture" differs quite a bit from Walter's, and Toby begins the explanation.
Both Toby and Trim were very sick with fever and "flux" at the siege of Limerick. Trim took care of his master and maintained the balance between radical heat and radical moisture "by reinforcing the fever.
The corporal gets into his orator's stance, and as he is about to begin, Dr. Walter asks about his son as carelessly as if he were inquiring about "the amputation of the tail of a puppy-dog.
Slop is pompous and professional; when he answers, Toby says, "I am no wiser than I was. Slop doesn't understand what kind of "medical lecture" this is supposed to be, and he speculates that "this poor fellow. Slop returns to his little patient, and Tristram promises that after one more chapter of the Tristrapaedia, the book "shall not be opened again this twelve-month.
After asking Trim whether he has ever seen a white bear he hasn'tWalter shows how it is possible to talk "intelligently" about one all the same: Have I ever seen one?
Might I ever have seen one? Am I ever to see one? Ought I ever to have seen one?
Or can I ever see one? All of this Chapters is told between the falling of the window and the resulting scream: By means of this clever device, these events seem simultaneous, but of course they aren't The author manages to create the effect of simultaneity; we are breathless from so many things happening "instantly.
Parallel events, however, are introduced to get the actions back into "real" time:The Qur’an is a very unique book in terms of its composition. Its chapters (or ‘Surahs’ in Arabic) are not arranged chronologically or thematically.
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Tristram Shandy, Philosopher So moral philosophy comprehends both complex rational analysis and the sort of ‘mustn’t grumble’ proverbial wisdom that bolsters the man on the Clapham omnibus. (Berkeley: University of California Press, ); James Swearingen, Reflexivity in Tristram Shandy: An Essay in Phenomenological Criticism.
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