Henry James was born on April 15, 1843, on Washington Place in New York to the most intellectually remarkable of American families. 23 0 obj<>endobj ", "I follow you every step of your way," said the friendly Brother. 7 0 obj<>endobj eNotes critical analyses help you gain a deeper understanding of The Great Good Place so you can excel on your essay or test. The Great Good Place by Henry James New York Edition, 1909 NOTES: (1) Italics for emphasis indicated by upper case, by lower case for the word _I_. "Is it anything very horrible?" ", "Oh it's positively a part of our ease and our rest and our change, I think, that we don't at all know and that we may really call it, for that matter, anything in the world we like--the thing for instance we love it most for being. ", "Well," said George Dane, "it was a young man I had never seen--a man at any rate much younger than myself--who had written to me and sent me some article, some book. James Henry is the pen name for James Gurbutt. "I couldn't have borne it longer. And he saw in my repletion and my 'renown'--deluded innocent!--what he had yearned for in vain. "You haven't yet got it? An hotel without noise, a club without newspapers--when he turned his face to what it was "without" the view opened wide. He had talked of independence and written of it, but what a cold flat word it had been! We're Brothers here for the time, as in a great monastery, and we immediately think of each other and recognise each other as such; but we must have first got here as we can, and we meet after long journeys by complicated ways. Between respect and reproach he paused. The comrade was possibly a novice or in a different stage from his own; there was at any rate a vague envy in the recognition that shone out of the fatigued yet freshened face. A quiet presence passed somewhere--neither of them turned to look. ", "It simply stands quiet, you mean," said Dane, "and lets us call it names? This Library of America volume is one of two volumes of the most extensive collection of his critical writings ever assembled, with many pieces never before available in book form. "I'll come in immediately. "Sacrificing the three to the one, you mean? And he stood and looked at the splash of the shower and the shine of the wet leaves. ", "At my saying to him by the end of five minutes: 'My dear fellow, I wish you'd just try it--wish you'd for a while just BE me!' The poor man dropped into the nearest (229) chair and stared a while at the carpet. Was this a threshold perhaps, after all, that could only be crossed one way? That's what's the matter with me. Ghost Stories of Henry James (2001) The Sense of the Past (2006) Os Amigos dos Amigos [Portuguese] (2007) The Turn of the Screw and Other Stories (2007) The Collected Supernatural and Weird Fiction of Henry James: Volume 1 (2009) The Collected Supernatural and Weird Fiction of Henry James: Volume 2 (2009) Henry James (1843–1916) was a prolific storyteller who supported himself by his writing. I may even have known you well. ", His friend, quite unmystified, accepted it. Our poor friend's touched nothing--only stole significantly into his pockets as he wandered over to the window and faintly gasped at the energy of nature. ", "No, I dare say not. "To Bradford?" She had soothed him rather, the night before, in the small hours by the lamp. THIS was a current so slow and so tepid that one floated practically without motion and without chill. ", It was only on this that Brown showed an expression. But there still on the table were the bare bones of the sentence--and not all of those; the single thing borne away and that he could never recover was the missing half that might have paired with it and begotten a figure. Why but through a queer phenomenon of change, on the spot, in his companion's face--change that gave it another, but an increasing and above all a much more familiar identity, an identity not beautiful, but more and more distinct, an identity with that of his servant, with the most conspicuous, the physiognomic seat of the public propriety of Brown? "It's charming how when we speak for ourselves we speak for each other. Dane echoed the sigh, and, as nobody talking with nobody, they sat there together still and watched the sweet wide picture darken into tepid night. There it was as sharp as possible in my imagination and my longing--there it was so utterly NOT in the fact. He heard a brief exchange of words in the hall, but never afterwards recovered the time taken by Brown to reappear, to precede and announce another person--a person whose name somehow failed to reach Dane's ear. All life was lifted; I myself at least was somehow off the ground. (242) I didn't know _ou donner de la tete_--I couldn't have gone a step further. One of these was that if he was still on the sofa he was now lying down; the other was the patter on the glass that showed him how the rain--the great rain of the night--had come back. 15 0 obj[8 0 R And at this, for farewell, the Brother held out his hand. ", "He was thinking it out--feeling for it, catching it. ", "The person to whom you've already alluded? ", "But you insisted, sir, that I was to insist!". "Every man must arrive by himself and on his own feet--isn't that so? ", "The next thing you'll be saying that we're babes at the breast! This was the wordless fact itself--the uncontested possession of the long sweet stupid day. 'Do hope you sweetly won't mind, to-day, 1.30, my bringing poor dear Lady Mullet, who's so awfully bent,' " he read to his companion. Dane caught a far bell again and heard a slow footstep. He found himself anew at the window, whence, looking down from his fourth floor, he could see the vast neighbourhood, under the trumpet-blare of the sky, beginning to rush about. "Is she--a--deformed, sir?" Dane sat down to his table and stared at his ragged phrase. " 31 0 obj<>endobj The kind full swish had been on the glass when he turned out his lamp; he had left his phrase unfinished and his papers lying quite as for the flood to bear them away in its rush. 12 0 obj<>endobj The mere dream-sweetness of the place was superseded; it was more and more a world of reason and order, of sensible visible arrangement. It has GOT to last of course!" The wise mind had felt, the wise mind had suffered; then, for all the worried company of minds, the wise mind had seen a chance. "Sure to--sure to. greeted the tardy Crillon after a great victory had been gained: "Hang yourself, brave Crillon! We really know none but our own. His master had at any rate caught his thought. I've got it. ", "There it is. "So have I," said the young man. "There remains 'The Great Good Place' (1900)--to the spirit of which, however, it strikes me, any gloss or comment would be a tactless challenge. (257) Into the closed and the stuffy they have to be driven. They combined to form the large simple idea of a general refuge--an image of embracing arms, of liberal accommodation. Every one was a little some one else. The sound was a groan; the plural pronoun, ANY pronoun, so mistimed. 17 0 R Two things in the short interval that followed were present to Dane: his having utterly forgotten the connexion, the whence, whither and why of his guest; and his continued disposition not to touch--no, not with the finger. 'Ah what I want doesn't exist!' He hadn't had to talk, he hadn't had to think, he had scarce even had to feel. "WHY it's raining!" Such an unutterable benefactor. He suppressed a gasp--it was after everything. They come so easily here, where nothing contradicts them." 20 0 obj<>endobj In the mere ecstasy of (252) change that had at first possessed him he hadn't discriminated--had only let himself sink, as I have mentioned, down to hushed depths. Then he added: "I see where you're coming out. That was exactly what I said!" Brown ought to have kicked them into the room--then he himself might have kicked them out. Dane opened the other telegram and again read out: " 'So sorry it's at eleventh hour impossible, and count on you here, as very greatest favour, at two sharp instead.' we fought at Arques, and you were not there." Dane broke in. You stay?" The Great Good Place Hardcover – September 10, 2010 by Henry James (Author) 3.2 out of 5 stars 2 ratings. he placidly observed. He had drawn in by this time, with his lightened hand, the whole of the long line, and that fact just dangled at the end. "Isn't simplification the secret? "It's liberty-hall--absolutely," Dane assented. x��1�0D�~O1e(0�ƉI�AT �,gB��@���5��&� �ǶC�h��9���ABtm-�. Ailbhe Ní Bhriain's 'Great Good Places I' 06:54 min, Video & CGI composite, colour, sound, looped, 2011 Sound: Pádraig Murphy. The real exquisite was to be without the complication of an identity, and the greatest boon of all, doubtless, the solid security, the clear confidence one could feel (251) in the keeping of the contract. It was the paradise of his own room that was most indebted to them--a great square fair chamber, all beautified with omissions, from which, high up, he looked over a long valley to a far horizon, and in which he was vaguely and pleasantly reminded of some old Italian picture, some Carpaccio or some early Tuscan, the representation of a world without newspapers and letters, without telegrams and photographs, without the dreadful fatal too much. What was most overwhelming was that she herself was so ready. ". "Pressure of every sort IS growing!" ", "And her bosom"--Dane completed the figure--"the noble eminence of our hill? See all formats and editions Hide other formats and editions. It was the rain of the night, yet when had he last heard it? 'THERE is a happy land--far far away!' "Ah wasn't it? An effect produced by the charming place was that for some reason he never wanted to bring more. At that I began to believe him.". "Do you mean there's too much, sir?" Brother of William James. 17 0 obj<>endobj "Well, my young man turned up, and I hadn't been a minute in his presence before making out that practically it would be in him somehow or other to help me. It was something too merciless, the domestic perfection of Brown. It would be perhaps an excuse. It wasn't they who made the conditions, it was the conditions that made them. ", Brown at last, under his apprehension, had his first lapse from logic, which he betrayed by hesitating in the evident hope his companion might by a flash of remembrance relieve him of an invidious duty. "My substitute in the world. "If the place really pays it will keep on. A bright-eyed American au pair hopes to make a difference caring for two orphans in a grand English manor. He cultivated, however, but vaguely the question of where he was, finding it near enough the mark to be almost sure that if he wasn't in Kent he was then probably in Hampshire. ", "Good!" I don't speak of the putting off of one's self; I speak only--if one has a self worth sixpence--of the getting it back. That was only delightful--as positively delightful in the particular, the actual conditions as it might have been the reverse in the conditions abolished. The wild waters would close over me and I should drop straight to the dark depths where the vanquished dead lie. It was strange, he at last mused, but the young man was still there. ", They pulled up again at this and, facing each other, thought of it, or at any rate pretended to; for what was really in their eyes was the dread of a loss of the clue. Posted July 4, 2000. "Can't remember, Brown? He (255) could put his other hand on it, he could unhook it, he was once more in possession. It was very complicated. There were newspapers on another table, ranged with the same rigour of custom, newspapers too many--what could any creature want of so much news?--and each with its hand on the neck of the other, so that the row of their bodiless heads was like a series of decapitations. He became a British subject in 1915, a year before his death. "Oh it doesn't matter! Tell me without delay where it is!' "Just on the sofa always, leaning back on the cushion and feeling a delicious ease. That's just the reason why what I put to him in joke--with a fantastic desperate irony--became, in his hands, with his vision of his chance, the blessed means and measure of my sitting on this spot in your company. Dane smiled. "Yes--think of knowing that we shall be able to! he asked, quite unperturbed. And so I remember we sat a while and looked at each other, with the final effect of my finding that I absolutely believed him. "Yes, yes; wait, wait.". Dane's converser laughed. --Brown had sometimes these flashes. "And then you got the tip? He did the place no outrage to liken it to an hotel; he permitted himself on occasion to feel it suggest a club. Harry Haag James (March 15, 1916 – July 5, 1983) was an American musician who is best known as a trumpet-playing band leader who led a big band from 1939 to 1946. Brown enquired, as if in this case she might make more. They sat there as innocently as small boys confiding to each other the names of toy animals. " That will do; anything will do that covers the essential fact. (228) "And you told me to remind you, sir--", George Dane was at last angry. $24.76 — Paperback "Please retry" $12.76 . It was the thing they never named--partly for want of the need and partly for lack of the word; for what indeed was the description that would cover it all? It was present to Dane each hour that he could never be overcharged. It meant above all that I should get off. To this, however, Dane demurred. There was no daily miracle; the perfect taste, with the aid of space, did the trick. "Yet should you call it particularly dear?" 5 0 obj<>endobj You must do it all yourself. The young man looked at his watch. Henry James, OM, son of theologian Henry James Sr., brother of the philosopher and psychologist William James and diarist Alice James, was an American-born author, one of the founders and leaders of a school of realism in fiction. What underlay and overhung it all, better yet, Dane mused, was some original inspiration, but confirmed, unquenched, some happy thought of an individual breast. ; The Novels and Stories of Henry James was the first major posthumous collection of the prose fiction of Henry James. James wrote a series of novels about Americans encountering Europeans and their experiences in Europe. Follow the "All Files: HTTP" link in the "View the book" box to the left to find XML files that contain more metadata about the original images and the derived formats (OCR results, PDF etc. "Isn't that rather sacrificing the three?" "Oh we shall meet!". The net was too fine; the cords crossed each other at spots too near together, making at each a little tight hard knot that tired fingers were (227) this morning too limp and too tender to touch. How can it not require to be, more and more, as pressure of every sort grows?". I just after a bit let you alone, and you were soon off." I was, heaven save us, the great 'success' for him; he himself was starved and broken and beaten. You go straight to the mark, good Brother, and that was exactly what occurred--extraordinary though it was that we should both have understood. ", "Well, we all get it. ", "Yes," Dane happily mused; "without that--!" "He gave you the address? "It's only because, sir, you know, sir, you can't remember--", At this Dane did flash round; it was more than at such a moment he could bear. The good Brother sighed contentedly; after which he brought out again with kindly humour: "It's a sort of kindergarten! It WAS all right. All the unbroken seals and neglected appeals lay there while, for a pause he couldn't measure, he stood before the chimney-piece with his hands still in his pockets. There are fewer things IN it! Slowly and blissfully he read into the general wealth of his comfort all the particular absences of which it was composed. Dane hesitated. 18 0 obj<>endobj We don't know. 2 0 obj<>endobj Discussion of themes and motifs in Henry James' The Great Good Place. He began to fit it together: while he had been off the young man had been on. How can I say what passed between us?--it was so strange, so swift, so much a matter, from one to the other, of instant perception and agreement. 19 0 obj<>endobj "But if we couldn't keep it up--? That was the gossip and interchange that could pass to and fro. 28 0 obj<>endobj That answered Dane's question; the face was the face turned to him by the good Brother there in the portico while they listened together to the rustle of the shower. They can always get off--the blessed houses receive. He came back of course soon, came back every day; enjoyed there, of all the rare strange moments, those that were at once most quickened and most caught--moments in which every apprehension counted double and every act of the mind was a lover's embrace. From behind the drawn curtain of his study the rain had been audible and in a manner merciful; washing the window in a steady flood, it had seemed the right thing, the retarding interrupting thing, the thing that, if it would only last, might clear the ground by floating out to a boundless sea the innumerable objects among which his feet stumbled and strayed. Dane picked out of his dim past a dozen halting similes. 'Oh if I could just SHIFT it all--make it straight over for an hour to other shoulders! "Ah that, it seems to me, scarcely puts it. " He chanted it like a sick child and knew that for a minute Brown never moved. They had no concern but to pay--the wise mind knew what they paid for. Brown went off again to serve breakfast, leaving host and guest confronted. He faced about precisely to meet his servant and the absurd solemnity of two telegrams on a tray. Etext prepared by Richard Hathaway, SUNY New Paltz Yet what happened was but that Dane took his hand from his pocket, held it straight out and felt it taken. "There's too much. Such memories worked in now--all familiar reference, all easy play of mind; and among them our friends, round and round, fraternised ever so softly till, suddenly stopping short, Dane, with a hand on his companion's arm, broke into the happiest laugh he had yet sounded. Everything--stranger still--was exactly in that position; everything at least but the light of the window, which came in from another quarter and showed a different hour. He couldn't, for that matter, easily have phrased it; it was such an abyss of negatives, such an absence of positives and of everything. His therapy was to keep busy with his pen. Whatever he might do he would at least prevent some other doing: that was present to our friend as, on the vibration of the electric bell at the door of the flat, Brown moved away. “The Real Thing,” one of Henry James’s most delicate exercises in irony, is the story of a young artist’s encounter with an odd couple—a well-dressed, middle-aged, rather vacuous pair named the Monarchs, who come to his studio one day and offer themselves as … ", "Yes," Dane returned, "in a sense--on somebody or other's part--so exquisitely personal! There then my indications must wait." The very essence of the bliss of Dane's whole change had been precisely that there was nothing now to time. But why was it, Dane after a moment found himself wondering, that in the act of separation his own hand was so long retained? On the day it came home to the right mind this dear place was constituted. "And who were YOU?" Dane crumpled up the two missives and walked with them to the waste-paper basket, into which he thoughtfully dropped them. 12 0 R He was already where I had been.". I was only, as the world goes, too 'beastly well'! During this minute he felt between his shoulders the gimlet of criticism. Wingfield’s original publisher back in the 1980s. ", "Of some great mild invisible mother who stretches away into space and whose lap's the whole valley--? It was supreme--it was everywhere. "No; she's only bent on coming!" 25 0 obj<>endobj Those things were in the world--in what he had left; there was no vulgarity here of credit or claim or fame. ", The good Brother took this gently up. Ailbhe Ní Bhriain's 'Great Good Places I' is Part I of a four-part series that borrows its title from the Henry James short story ‘The Great Good Place’. "It's my certainty that overwhelms me, Brown. Brown imperturbably continued. Our friend, from his chair, looked vaguely about; under his hand were the telegrams, still unopened, one of which he now tore asunder. " All it so securely did have overwhelmed him again, and he couldn't help breaking out: "WHAT is it? "No doubt, no doubt; and yet, thank goodness, there's love in it too." There had been times when he had done full justice to the way it kept him up; now, however, it was almost the worst of the avalanche. ", "Ah!" He felt afresh, in the light of his companion's face, what it might still be even when deeply satisfied, as well as what communication was established by the mere common knowledge of it. ", They resumed their stroll, which evidently represented on the good Brother's part infinite agreement. He had positively laid down his pen as on a sense of friendly pressure from it. (This is James's entire comment.). These others, the abolished, came back to Dane at last so easily that he could exactly measure each difference, but with what he had finally been hustled on to hate in them robbed of its terror in consequence of something that had happened. I simply sat and watched him with the queerest deepest sweetest sense in the world--the sense of an ache that had stopped. It was part of the high style and the grand manner that there was no personal publicity, much less any personal reference. There was a silence, but he knew Brown hadn't left him--knew exactly how straight and serious and stupid and faithful he stood there. ", "No, thank God--that's enough," Dane contentedly smiled. ". Dane comically sighed. It was extraordinary how this remark fitted into his thought. "Don't trouble about me," he went on insincerely and looking askance through his window again at the bright and beautiful world. 26 0 obj<>endobj sister projects: Wikidata item. his friend after a moment enquired. It was in the way an open window in a broad recess let in the pleasant morning; in the way the dry air pricked into faint freshness the gilt of old bindings; in the way an empty chair beside a table unlittered showed a volume just laid down; in the way a happy Brother--as detached as one's self (254) and with his innocent back presented--lingered before a shelf with the slow sound of turned pages. 14 0 obj<>endobj the Brother amusedly asked. It came back, yes, came back; the appointment with the young man--he supposed him young--whose letter, the letter about--what was it?--had struck him. 9 0 R There, in its place, WAS life--with all its rage; the vague unrest of the need for action knew it again, the stir of the faculty that had been refreshed and reconsecrated. 21 0 obj[16 0 R Fans and newcomers alike will not be disappointed.' This recalled disposition of some great abode of an Order, some mild Monte Cassino, some Grande Chartreuse more accessible, was his main term of comparison; but he knew he had really never anywhere beheld anything at once so calculated and so generous. But two minutes before? It embodies a calculated effect, and to plunge into it, I find, even for a beguiled glance--a course I indeed recommend--is to have left all else outside. It must have a climate, you see. What he had felt the first time recurred: the friend was always new and yet at the same time--it was amusing, not disturbing--suggested the possibility that he might be but an old one altered. 34 0 obj<>/XObject<<>>>>>>endobj He broke up his band for a short period in 1947 but shortly after he reorganized and was active again with his band from then until his death in 1983. Dane again and again, among the far bells and the soft footfalls, in cool cloister and warm garden, found himself wanting not to know more and yet liking not to know less. 6 0 obj<>endobj "I remember--I remember: seven francs a day without wine! And there were all sorts of freedoms--always, for the occasion, the particular right one. ", His friend was ready enough to imagine. Without pressing this point he looked at his watch. He came to my help again," Dane pursued, "when he saw I couldn't quite meet that, could at least only say that I wanted to think, wanted to cease, wanted to do the thing itself--the thing that mattered and that I was trying for, miserable me, and that thing only--and therefore wanted first of all really to SEE it again, planted out, crowded out, frozen out as it now so long had been. There was such a huge chance for it!". ", "I know what i call it," said Dane after a moment. The library was a benediction--high and clear and plain like everything else, but with something, in all its arched amplitude, unconfused and brave and gay. This perfection, he felt on the bench by his friend, was now more within reach than ever. "How do I know, after all? Three impressions in particular had been with him all the week, and he could but recognise in silence their happy effect on his nerves. That doubtless was a flattering phrase for his idea of his genius; the genius was at all events what he had been in danger of losing and had at last held by a thread that might at any moment have broken. It seems to me one can puzzle them.". George Dane had opened his eyes to a bright new day, the face of nature well washed by last night's downpour and shining as with high spirits, good resolutions, lively intentions--the great glare of recommencement in short fixed in his patch of sky. Look about you and judge. These conditions found themselves accepted, clearly, with an appreciation, with a rapture, it was rather to be called, that proceeded, as the very air that pervaded them and the force that sustained, from their quiet and noble assurance. His friend happily concurred. the Brother admitted. The Great Good Place 1 washing the window in a steady flood, it had seemed the right thing, the retarding interrupting thing, the thing that, if it would only last, might clear the ground by floating out to a boundless sea the innumerable objects (241) The Brother, as if it would do them both good, only desired to draw him out. 18 0 R Philip Wingfield, son of the late R. D. Wingfield approves; he remarked, 'The author has captured my father's style superbly. They must return to the front sooner or later--that was certain: for each his hour would strike. the fourth. Dane's next consciousness was that of the desire to make sure he WAS away, and this desire had somehow the result of dissipating the obscurity. "It's a shocking thing to say, but I wish to heaven I weren't! He was so clever and haggard and hungry! 3 0 obj<>endobj How long had he stayed--days, weeks, months? ", Brown's master thought. "Ah I know that too! That was what had been most in the wise mind--the importance of the absolute sense, on the part of its beneficiaries, that what was offered was guaranteed. ", "So have I, so I dare say has every one. Bring out sweet smells 's Magazine in 1900 difference caring for two orphans in a sense the... Would have to have been first still there. disappointment, he could unhook it, Dane. Can you say more could n't keep it up -- drop straight to the,. My voice, off, off. bright country-house Dane 's whole change had been precisely that there was daily! Blessed houses receive perfectly, ( 247 ) the Brother held out his hand there above all I... 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