James Joyce Statue on Earl Street, Dublin
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member RakeInTheCache
N 53° 20.987 W 006° 15.582
29U E 682392 N 5914682
Quick Description: Sculpted by Marjorie Fitzgibbon and unveiled in 1990.
Location: Ireland
Date Posted: 10/31/2006 2:29:21 AM
Waymark Code: WMWYY
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member silverquill
Views: 226

Long Description:
James Augustine Aloysius Joyce (Irish Seamus Seoighe; 2 February 1882 – 13 January 1941) was an expatriate Irish writer and poet, widely considered to be one of the most influential writers of the 20th century. He is best known for his landmark novel Ulysses (1922). His other major works are the short story collection Dubliners (1914), the novels A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (1916) and Finnegans Wake (1939).

Although most of his adult life was spent outside the country, Joyce's Irish experiences are essential to his writings and provide all of the settings for his fiction and much of their subject matter. His fictional universe is firmly rooted in Dublin and reflects his family life and the events and friends (and enemies) from his school and college days. Due to this, he became both one of the most cosmopolitan and one of the most local of all the great English language modernists.

In 1882, James Augustine Joyce was born into a Catholic family in the Dublin suburbs of Rathgar. He was the eldest of ten surviving children; two of his siblings died of typhoid.

In 1891, Joyce wrote a poem, "Et Tu Healy," on the death of Charles Stewart Parnell. His father had it printed and even sent a copy to the Vatican Library.

James Joyce was initially educated at Clongowes Wood College, a boarding school in County Kildare, which he entered in 1888 but had to leave in 1892 when his father could no longer pay the fees. Joyce then studied at home and briefly at the Christian Brothers school on North Richmond Street, Dublin, before he was offered a place in the Jesuits' Dublin school, Belvedere College, in 1893. The offer was made at least partly in the hope that he would prove to have a vocation and join the Order. Joyce, however, was to reject Catholicism by the age of 16, although the philosophy of St. Thomas Aquinas would remain a strong influence on him throughout his life.

He enrolled at the recently established University College Dublin in 1898. He studied modern languages, specifically English, French and Italian. He also became active in theatrical and literary circles in the city. His review of Ibsen's New Drama, his first published work, was published in 1900 and resulted in a letter of thanks from the Norwegian dramatist himself. Joyce wrote a number of other articles and at least two plays (since lost) during this period. Many of the friends he made at University College Dublin would appear as characters in Joyce's written works.

After graduating from UCD in 1903, Joyce left for Paris; ostensibly to study medicine, but in reality he squandered money his family could ill afford. He returned to Ireland after a few months, when his mother was diagnosed with cancer. Joyce refused to pray at her bedside but this seems to have had more to do with Joyce's agnosticism than antagonism for his mother. After she died he continued to drink heavily, and conditions at home grew quite appalling. He scraped a living reviewing books, teaching and singing.

In 1915 he moved to Zürich in order to avoid the complexities of living in Austria-Hungary during World War I. It was here where Ezra Pound brought him to the attention of English feminist and publisher Harriet Shaw Weaver, who would become Joyce's patron, providing him thousands of pounds over the next 25 years and relieving him of the burden of teaching in order to focus on his writing. Joyce headed to Paris in 1920 at an invitation from Ezra Pound, supposedly for a week, but he ended up living there for the next twenty years.

He travelled frequently to Switzerland for eye surgeries and treatments. In Paris, Maria and Eugene Jolas nursed Joyce during his long years of writing Finnegans Wake. Were it not for their unwavering support (along with Harriet Shaw Weaver's constant financial support), there is a good possibility that his books might never have been finished or published. In their now legendary literary magazine "transition," the Jolases published serially various sections of Joyce's novel under the title Work in Progress. He returned to Zürich in late 1940, fleeing the Nazi occupation of France. On 11 January 1941, he underwent surgery for a perforated ulcer. While at first improved, he relapsed the following day, and despite several transfusions, fell into a coma. He awoke at 2 a.m. on 13 January 1941, and asked for a nurse to call his wife and son before losing consciousness again. They were still en route when he expired fifteen minutes later. He is buried in the Fluntern Cemetery within earshot of the lions in the Zürich zoo. His wife Nora, whom he finally married in London in 1931, survived him by 10 years. She is buried now by his side, as is their son George, who died in 1976.

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