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James Joyce: Man and Writer

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by

Ann Tucker

on 2 December 2013

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Transcript of James Joyce: Man and Writer

James Joyce: The Man and The Writer
Early Life
Writing Style and Important Works
The Tortured Artist
Birth
Born February 2, 1882 as James Augustine Aloysius Joyce
He was the eldest of ten children, born to John Stanislaus Joyce and his wife Marry Murray Joyce
His father, while a talented singer, didn't provide a stable a household. He liked to drink and his lack of attention to the family finances meant the Joyces never had much money.
Father was physically abusive of his mother
The Young Scholar
From an early age, James Joyce showed a gift for writing and a passion for literature. He taught himself Norwegian so he could read Henrik Ibsen's plays in the language they'd been written, and spent his free time devouring Dante, Aristotle, and Thomas Aquinas.
Life outside of Ireland
Moved to Trieste, Italy with his lady love after the death of his mother (1904)
There, Joyce taught English and learned Italian, one of 17 languages he could speak, a list that included Arabic, Sanskrit, and Greek. Other moves followed, as the Joyce and Barnacle (the two weren't formally married until some three decades after they met) made their home in cities like Rome and Paris.
Writing Style
Even though he exiled himself from his native land, the majority of his works are about Ireland and depict the seedy underbelly of Dublin society.
Perfected a stream of consciousness writing style
Writing considered too graphic by some and sometimes called pornographic by others.
Dubliners
1914 he published his first book, Dubliners, a collection of 15 short stories.
“Eveline” is one of the short stories from this collection. It is about a young woman, Eveline, who sits in her house and reviews her decision to elope with her lover, Frank, to Argentina, leaving Ireland behind forever. Eveline wonders if she has made the correct choice to leave her home and family.
Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man
A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man
tells the story of Stephen Dedalus, a boy growing up in Ireland at the end of the nineteenth century, as he gradually decides to cast off all his social, familial, and religious constraints to live a life devoted to the art of writing. It is considered semi-autobiographical.
Ulysses

Ulysses
recounts a single day in Dublin. The date: June 16, 1904, the same day that Joyce and Barnacle met. On the surface, the novel follows the story three central characters, Stephen Dedalus, Leopold Bloom, a Jewish advertising canvasser, and his wife Molly Bloom, as well as the city life that unfolds around them. But Ulysses is also a modern retelling of Homer's Odyssey, with the three main characters serving as modern versions of Telemachus, Ulysses, and Penelope.


Education in Ireland
Because of his intelligence Joyce's family pushed him to get an education. Largely educated by Jesuits, Joyce attended the Irish schools of Clongowes Wood College and later Belvedere College before finally landing at University College Dublin, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree with a focus on modern languages.
Later in Life
Despite making a name for himself as a writer, he suffered from a constant stream of ocular illnesses, went through a host of surgeries, and for a number of years was near blind. At times Joyce was forced to write in red crayon on sheets of large paper.
1940, Joyce and his wife moved to the south of France because of the Nazi invasion during WW II.
Following an intestinal operation, the writer died at the age of 59 on January 13, 1941 His wife and son were at his bedside when he passed.
Mini Biography
Controversy of Ulysses
With its advanced use of interior monologue, the novel not only brought the reader deep into Stephen Bloom's sometimes lurid mind, but pioneered Joyce's use of stream of consciousnesses as a literary technique and set the course for a whole new kind of novel.
In the US, Ulysses's supposed obscenity prompted the Post Office to confiscate issues of the magazine that had published Joyce's work. Fines were levied against the editors, and a censorship battle was waged that only further hyped the novel.
Molly's final speech in Ulysses
Left Ireland after graduating college (1903) and fled to Paris, essentially exiling himself from his native land.
At 23, met a hotel maid, Nora Barnacle, whom he later married and had 2 children with.
He came back to Ireland when his mother passed away, also in 1903.
Leaving Ireland
Nora Barnacle
Born in Galway, Ireland in 1884
In 1896, Nora fell in love with a teenager named Michael Feeney, who died soon after of typhoid and pneumonia. Later, another boy loved by Nora, Michael Bodkin, died in 1900, bringing her the name of "man-killer" from her friends (Joyce's "The Dead")
She and Joyce's relationship was very passionate in the beginning and they wrote very erotic love letters to one another
2 children, son Giorgio and daughter Lucia, who was later committed by Nora to a mental institute. She never saw her again.
As a young student, Joyce would wander the streets of Dublin and become acquainted with its naughtier side. He was raised Catholic and grappled with guilt throughout adolescence before denouncing his faith at 16. Saw women in 2 forms: virgin or prostitute, no in between. Often cheated on Nora.
Young James Joyce
Literary works were praised by Ezra Pound and the like.

His final work was
Finnegan's Wake
, published in 1939 to critical praise.
Joyce's Later Years
Though he never returned to Ireland, his depictions of Dublin through his literary works were praised by critics and citizens of Ireland.

"I've put in so many enigmas and puzzles that it will keep the professors busy for centuries arguing over what I meant, and that's the only way of insuring one's immortality."


Immortalized in Dublin
Full transcript