Monday marked Bloomsday, the annual celebration of James Joyce’s 732-page day-in-a-book, Ulysses. While this is hardly short fiction, Joyce is also often credited as one of the earliest practitioners of the epiphany, a technique that still burns bright in short fiction (and at times too bright as some have told it)....more
Posts Tagged: James Joyce
Sweny’s, the pharmacy made famous in Joyce’s Ulysses (when Leopold Bloom visits the Dublin shop to purchase lotion and soap for his wife Molly), opened more than 167 years ago and has remained more or less unchanged for most of that time....more
Gather round, ye James Joyce devotees: Mark O’Connell has an essay (replete with some pretty nifty info-graphics) up at Salon on the Dublin of the past and present:
Everyone in Dubliners is thinking about a way out, if not actively pursuing one; everyone is dreaming of some better version of himself in some better place. The stories are filled with vague conjurings of such better places—the Wild West in “An Encounter”; the hazily evoked Orient in “Araby”; Buenos Aires in “Eveline”; London and Paris in “A Little Cloud”—but what seem like possibilities of escape always turn out to be passages to deeper entrapment.
What happens when the reproduction rights of literary works and an author’s public image are taken out of their owner’s control, but without any law infringement?
Over at the Paris Review, Evan Kindley tries to find out. He compares the case of the upcoming David Foster Wallace movie, adapted from David Lipsky’s memoir Although Of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself, to what happened to James Joyce when Ulysses was reprinted by another author in the U.S., where the book wasn’t under copyright....more
Story is an integral part of the city of Dublin. Bronze statues of beloved writers roam the landscape, immortal: Wilde lounges “languidly on a crag in the park at Merrion Square,” while Joyce is “depicted rather more severely in bronze, leaning on his cane as he strolls down North Earl Street.”
Ever wondered what the tower in the opening scene of Ulysses actually looks like?...more
The first of three parts of a Chinese translation of Finnegans Wake consumed eight years of translator Dai Congrong’s life. The almost unreadable book proves even more difficult to translate because of the many puns and layered meanings, explains MobyLives:
The novel has been deemed “untranslatable” and the translations that are successful tend to be consuming: the Polish version took ten years to finish, the French version thirty years, and the Japanese version took three separate translators after the first disappeared and the second went mad.
Shawn Andrew Mitchell reviews Kevin Barry’s DARK LIES THE ISLAND today in The Rumpus Book Reviews....more
The premise of the game “James Joyce or Kool Keith?” is simple: “Can you distinguish between sentences written by the Irish novelist and the lyrics of surrealist rapper Kool Keith?”
In practice, depending on your level of familiarity with each artist’s oeuvre, it might be a bit more complicated....more
For Bookish, music writer and self-described “karaoke ho” Rob Sheffield lists which songs famous authors of the past would have belted out on karaoke night.
He’s unquestionably right about Oscar Wilde crooning something from The Smiths, though it seems a missed opportunity not to have given James Joyce “Baby Got Back.”
Which tunes do you think your favorite writers would have favored?...more
What is the most important thing England’s former colonies have in common? For Saikat Majumdar, an assistant professor at Stanford, the answer is boredom.
In his latest book, Prose of the World, Majumdar explores how writers from Ireland’s James Joyce to India’s Amit Chaudhuri spin the everyday dullness of marginalization into gleaming prose....more
For the Atlantic‘s “By Heart,” “a series in which authors share and discuss their all-time favorite passages in literature,” Jim Shepard discusses Flannery O’Connor, James Joyce, and the painfully fleeting nature of epiphany:
This kind of conversion notion is based on a very comforting idea—that if only we had sufficient information, we wouldn’t act badly.
The moment when a new book is begun it is a moment that vibrates, as potential energy (a writer’s wisdom distilled into a completed work, printed, bound, placed in your hands), converted slowly into kinetic energy (second by second, minute by minute, hour by hour, day by day) with each turn of the page....more
It’s the 107th anniversary of everybody’s favorite James Joycian holiday!
That’s right—Bloomsday, the 24 hr period in which Leopold Bloom makes his way through Dublin in Ulysses. One way to appreciate those 265,000 words is through twitter or there’s always the NPR profile, and if that’s not enough—an ipad app!...more
In This Light, a collection of Melanie Rae Thon’s short stories, shows the writer’s shifts in the last twenty years, while reminding us of her powerful, haunting storytelling....more
John Barry has a piece up at The Baltimore City Paper in which he argues that too many American short story writers are taught to try to mimic that famous last paragraph in James Joyce’s short story “The Dead.” And this just might be why no one reads short stories anymore....more
The deadline for entry into the Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg poetry prizes is nearing. These are some of the most generous poetry prizes available, and they give a large number of them every year. The Rumpus interviewed Mary Rosenberg last March to discuss the prizes and how she approaches poetry in general....more
“Sit back. I’m going to tell you a story,” Frank said in his brogue, looking into the distance like a Homerian epic-teller. “Don’t you ever dare steal it.”...more
Today is the 105th anniversary of Leopold Bloom’s one-day passage through the ordinary streets of Dublin in James Joyce’s Ulysses. Dubliners and Joyce-lovers around the world are celebrating the author as well as the book, with readings, races, reenactments, and even Twitter (don’t worry, they only adapted the tenth chapter)....more