A blog for the comprehensive understanding of Literature, Applied Linguistics and ELT

February 10, 2018

James Joyce Quick Facts

James Joyce, a 20th century influential Irish writer.


  • Birth Name: James Augustine Aloysius Joyce
  • Date of Birth: February 2, 1882
  • Place of Birth: 44 Brighton Square, Terenure, Dublin, Ireland
  • Zodiac Sign: Aquarius
  • Date of Death: January 13, 1941
  • Place of Death: Zurich, Zurich District, Canton of Zurich, Switzerland
  • Place of Burial: Fluntern Cemetery, Fluntern, Bezirk Zürich, Zürich, Switzerland
  • Cause of Death: Perforated duodenal ulcer
  • Ethnicity: White
  • Nationality: Irish
  • Height: 5 ft 10 in
  • Father: John Stanislaus Joyce (1849 -1931)
  • Mother: Mary Jane (Murray) Joyce (1859-1903)
  • Siblings:
  1. Sister- Katie Joyce (c. 1875-?)
  2. Sister-Elizabeth W Joyce (c. 1879-?)
  3. Brother-John Augustine Joyce (c. 1881 - c. 1883)
  4. Sister-Margaret Alice Joyce (c. 1884 - c. 1964)
  5. Brother- John Stanislaw Joyce (1884-1955)
  6. Sister- Mary Jane Joyce (c. 1886)
  7. Brother - Charles Patrick Joyce (1886-?)
  8. Brother- George Alfred Joyce (c. 1888 - 1902)
  9. Sister- Mabel Josephine Anne Joyce (1893-?)
  10. Sister -Eileen Isabella Joyce (1889-1963)
  11. Sister- Eva May Joyce (1891)
  • Sexual Orientation: Straight
  • Spouse: Nora Barnacle (m. 1931) (1884 -1951)
  • Children:
  1. Son - Giorgio Joyce (1905 -1976)
  2. Daughter- Lucia Anna Joyce (1907-1982)
  • Alma Mater: Clongowes Wood College; Belvedere College; University College Dublin
  • Known for: his experiments with language, symbolism, and perfecting the narrative techniques of interior monologue and stream of consciousness
  • James Joyce was criticized for: complicating his writings through vague references or dull descriptions of intimate matters, including sexual activity.
  • James Joyce was influenced by: William Shakespeare, Oscar Wilde, Charles Dickens, W. B. Yeats, Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Leo Tolstoy, Ezra Pound, Friedrich Nietzsche, Homer, Gustave Flaubert, Dante Alighieri, Anton Chekhov, Jonathan Swift, Miguel de Cervantes, Aristotle, Henrik Ibsen, Stendhal, Lord Byron, John Milton, Laurence Sterne, François Rabelais, Percy Bysshe Shelley, Bertrand Russell, Carl Jung, Thomas Aquinas, George Moore, Edmund Spenser, Mikhail Lermontov, Robert Burns, Ben Jonson, Giordano Bruno, Giambattista Vico, Sheridan Le Fanu, John Henry Newman, Otto Weininger, and Jens Peter Jacobsen
  • Joyce's Works Inspired:  James Blish, Anthony Burgess, Philip Dick, William Faulkner, Anthony Burgess, and Leonard Cohen


“His heart danced upon her movements like a cork upon a tide. He heard what her eyes said to him from beneath their cowl and knew that in some dim past, whether in life or revery, he had heard their tale before.” - James Joyce, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man

Major Works

  • Dubliners (1914)
  • A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (1916)
  • Exiles (1918)
  • Ulysses (1922)
  • Pomes Penyeach (1927)
  • Finnegans Wake (1939)

Major Themes

  • Psychology
  • Exile
  • Myth
  • Catholicism

Did You Know?

  • James Joyce was the eldest of 12 children born to John Stanislaus Joyce and Mary Jane (Murray) Joyce.
  • His father had an unsuccessful career with involvement in several jobs including a position as tax collector for the city of Dublin.
  • His mother was a gifted pianist.
  • Joyce was educated entirely in Catholic schools in Ireland.
  • James Joyce graduated in 1902 with a Pass degree in modern languages.
  • Soon after his graduation, Joyce left Ireland to pursue a medical education in Paris.
  • He returned to Ireland briefly in 1903 upon news of his mother's illness but left for Paris in 1904 after her death.
  • In Paris, Joyce lived in near poverty even after the successful publication of Ulysses in 1922.
  • Joyce's younger brother, Stanislaus Joyce provided him financial support throughout his life.
  • Although Joyce and Nora started living together since1904, the couple finally got married in 1931 and the wedlock continued until Joyce's death.
  • Joyce was plagued by severe eye problems for most of his adult life, which eventually led to near blindness. He underwent a multitude of surgeries for eye problems.
  • Joyce's first published book was Chamber Music (1907), a collection of 36 love poems.
  • His first prose work, Dubliners was published in 1914, which contained 15 short stories and sketches.
  • Joyce's works left a profound impact on the Irish cinema, especially towards the development of the avant-garde film style.
  • Joyce gained international recognition through the publication of Ulysses which many people consider one of the greatest and most original books ever written.
  • Ulysses was first serialised in parts in the American journal The Little Review from March 1918 to December 1920.
  • Ulysses was published as a complete book in Paris by Sylvia Beach, of the bookstore Shakespeare & Co. on 2 February 1922, Joyce's 40th birthday.
  • Ulysses was banned in the United States from 1922 until 1933.

Media Gallery

James Joyce

James Joyce with his daughter Lucia Anna Joyce, wife Nora Barnacle, and son Giorgio Joyce

James Joyce with his daughter Lucia Anna Joyce

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