‘Such Friends’: Happy Bloomsday! James Joyce in Dublin and Paris

James Joyce left Ireland for the continent in 1904, moved to Paris in 1920, and spent most of the rest of his life there. Unlike the American expatriates, Joyce kept mostly to himself, but frequented Paris cafes, bursting into song after a few drinks, rolling home drunk in a taxi. Gertrude Stein, Alice B. Toklas, Ernest Hemingway, F. Scott Fitzgerald, and Sylvia Beach, among others, were there at the same time and provided the cultural background for Joyce to work on Ulysses and Finnegan’s Wake.

In presentations on the Semester at Sea May 2013 Enrichment Voyage [http://www.enrichmentvoyages.org/], at the Birmingham [UK] Irish Heritage Association, and the Birmingham & Midland Institute, we have looked at Joyce’s development from a young Dublin aspirant writer at the beginning of the last century to the Paris-based crotchety author of Ulysses in the 1920s. In February, at the Irish Heritage Association, we even celebrated his birthday with cake!

10 thoughts on “‘Such Friends’: Happy Bloomsday! James Joyce in Dublin and Paris

  1. Blooms day is approaching get ready….
    A Celebration of Literature – Words – Wit – Wisdom – Where ?

    James Joyces book ‘Ulysses’ depicts the events of one day when Stephen Dedalus and Leopold Bloom took their epic journey through Dublin.

    For millions of people, June 16 is an extraordinary day. On that day in 1904, Stephen Dedalus and Leopold Bloom each took their epic journeys through Dublin in James Joyce’s Ulysses, the world’s most highly acclaimed modern novel. “Bloomsday”, as it is now known, has become a tradition for Joyce enthusiasts all over the world. From Tokyo to Sydney, San Francisco to Paris, Trieste to Northampton, dozens of cities around the globe hold their own Bloomsday festivities. The celebrations usually include readings as well as staged re-enactments and street-side improvisations of scenes from the story.

    To celebrate that special day, known as Bloomsday, the Irish
    Community Arts Project will present a reading by invited literary figures at the graveside of Lucia Anna Joyce who died in Northampton in 1982.

    The event will take place at 7pm on Tuesday 16th June 2015 at Kingsthorpe Cemetery.

    The Triskelion Theatre Company will perform in period costume.

    Further details from

    Peter Mulligan
    Project Co-ordinator
    The Irish Community Arts Project
    Northampton Connolly Association
    5 Woodland Avenue
    Abington Park
    Northampton NN3 2BY

    Tel. 01604-715793
    e-mail: caprojects.PM@gmail.com 12th Bloomsday 2015

  2. we are at the brum heritage meeting on 11th november will a display of bi-lingual celtic art christmas cards. we do a vast range and always welcome the opportunity to present a small exhibition of the art form.

  3. Designed to hold back the elements.
    Destiné à résister aux elements
    The gales have lashed them
    Les bourrasques les ont attaqués
    The winter waves beat them
    Les vagues hivernales les ont attus
    But they hold, immovable
    Mais ils résistent indomptables
    Great rocks of granite.
    De grands rocs de granit
    What dark and wondrous caverns
    Quelles cavernes sombres et errantes
    Lie beneath.
    Reposent en dessous
    Clean – with streaks of silver reflected in the sun
    Propres – avec des rais d’argent qui reflètent au soleil
    Le visage de Beckett

    © MULLIGAN Peter
    (as a boy I played in those rocks as the yachts glided in the harbour)

    read at the centenary event in monparnasse

  4. Salutations – 2nd october is national poetry day – we read John Clare poetry by the portico where he sat. All saint church 7pm on national poetry day every year – this is the 11th year.

    Peter Mulligan
    project coordinator

  5. we also do…




    Peter Mulligan

  6. we sang just a song at twilight by the graveside of Lucia Joyce – we do it each year – see also our centenary event in Monparnase for Beckett. Peter Mulligan. Northampton

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