James Joyce

Joyce was born in Dublin, he studied in Dublin but then he spent some time in Paris till his mother’s illness which brought him back to Ireland. Because of his ideas, as the freeing of Ireland from English dominance, he began to think himself not just as an Irishman but as a European and so he started offering a realistic portrait of its life from a European and cosmopolitan viewpoint. He married Nora Barnacle and it’s important to point out their first date because Joyce made it became the “Bloomsday” of Ulysses, one of his important novels. Joyce and his family settled in Triste and these were difficult years for him, filled with financial problems.
Despite the fact he went into voluntary exile, he settled his novels mostly in Dublin, in Ireland, giving a realistic portrait of the life of ordinary people doing ordinary things, representing the whole man’s emotional and mental reality. About his style and technique: Joyce wanted to give the best normal and realistic portrait of life using different points of view of different characters.


One of his most important novels; it consists in 15 short stories, a representation of the historical, social and psychological forces that conditioned Dubliners. It’s divided into 4 periods of life: childhood, adolescence, mature life, public life; the last story is “The dead”, probably the most important of this novel.
About it we distinguish three phases of the characters of each story:
1. Stagnation(passivity):thecharacteris
isolated and lives a passive existence.
2. Epiphany:asaddenrevelationhappens
which makes him think he’s living a passive existence and he could live a better life.
3. Paralysis:thecharacterisn’t disappointed about his conditions anymore.


It’s a story in Dubliners about a 19-year-old girl who has the opportunity of changing her life but she’s unable to leave her familiar community in Dublin. She’s tired of her life, one of her two brothers and her mother are dead, she works every day, she worries about her father who isn’t always so good as she remembers, so when she gets to know this sailor who wants to take her away from Dublin to Buenos Aires, she thinks it’s the right thing to do to change her life; but, when she’s in the middle of doing it, she’s like blocked by some memories (paralysis) she stars thinking that maybe her life is not so bad as it seems.

Joyce vs Virginia Wolf

These two modernist writers are both famous for the way that they use the “stream of consciousness” in their works to record the thoughts and feelings of their characters. Yet, if we look more closely at their works, we can see that there are some significant differences in their literature. The biggest difference comes through two defining features of their different style. Joyce's work uses what he called “epiphanies”, and Woolf used what she referred to as a "moment of being."
Joyce makes her characters show their emotions and was more interested in language and every detail; Woolf never lets her characters doing so and her language was more poetic, emotional.
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