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Leopold Bloom, a Jewish advertisement canvasser, alienated from his society and religious community, but capable of charitable deeds and acts of kindness, is the protagonist of the novel.
Bloomís sexual perversities, unfulfilled desires, vague wishes, enfeebling anxieties, morbid compulsions and propensity to censure the behavior of others are antagonistic tendencies he must overcome.
The climax of the novel is reached in the maternity hospital. The outcome is seen in the actual meeting between Bloom, the spiritual father and Stephen, his spiritual son. They immediately find in common an aversion to the ribald disrespect shown by their companions.
The novel presents indeed serious scenes like Paddy Dignamís funeral, the poverty of the Dedalus family and the trauma of childbirth in a maternity hospital. This is the tragic vision projected in the novel. It is, however, balanced by Bloomís comic vision of things flourishing around him. The final outcome of the plot is comic, since the last scene presents a scene of reconciliation between husband and wife and a reunion between a father figure (Bloom) and a son figure (Stephen) who complement one another.