A Confederacy of Dunces

Overview
Ignatius Reilly has tried to hide from the 1960s world of his hometown,
New Orleans. Forced to get a job, he encounters pornographers,
industrialists, secretaries, revolutionaries, and partygoers as he tries
to figure out his place in the world.
Mrs.Irene Reilly
Ignatius J.Reilly
A Confederacy of Dunces
Running Away
Trying to Start Revolutions
Gettihng a Job
When his mother wants
to have him committed,
Ignatius flees New Orleans.
Ignatius tries—and fails—to
encourage civil rights and
LGBT rights protests.
Forced to get a job, Ignatius
is a lazy, irresponsible
employee of Levy Pants.
Main Characters
Patrolman Angelo Mancuso
Inept but kindhearted police
officer; helps the Reillys but
is teased at work
Large, gluttonous 30-year-old
man; lives at home; selfish
son and terrible employee
Older woman who drinks, overwhelmed by her difficult son, Ignatius
African American man realistic about segregation and oppression, saves ignatius life.
Burma Jones
Cold and manipulative or weak and victimized women are unlovable.
Unlovable Women
Ignatius thinks fate guides him and frees him from responsibility.
Fate
Themes
Disguises conceal you or let others project their judgements onto you.
Disguise
Toole was born in New
Orleans to a salesman father
and overbearing mother.
He hoped to be a writer, but
A Confederacy of Dunces was
repeatedly rejected by
publishers. The novel was
published after Toole's suicide,
earning him a posthumou
JOHN KENNEDY TOOLE
1937-69
Arthur
Revolution or Confusion in New Orleans
14