Critical Insights: James Joyce

Critical Insights Series

The series focuses on an individual author's entire body of work, a single work of literature, or a literary theme.

At a Glance
  • 1 Volume; 300 Pages
  • 10-14 essays offering Current Critical Analysis by Top Literary Scholars
  • Introductory Essay by the Editor
  • Chronology of Author's Life
  • Complete List of Author's Works
  • Publication Dates of Works
  • Detailed Bio of the Editor
  • General Bibliography
  • General Subject Index
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Edited by Albert Wachtel

Essays in this collection survey the spectrum of critical evaluations, explanations and appreciations of the book, revealing a kaleidoscope of fruitful approaches to this work.

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Editor: Albert Wachtel, Professor of Creative
Studies and English at Pitzer College
and Claremont Graduate University
May 2013 · 1 volume · 300 pages · 6"x9"

Includes Online Database with Print Purchase
ISBN: 978-1-4298-3834-4
# of Pages: 300
# of Volumes: 1
Print List Price: $105
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e-ISBN: 978-1-4298-3850-4
eBook Single User Price: $105

Outstanding, in-depth scholarship by renowned literary critics; great starting point for students seeking an introduction to James Joyce and the critical discussions surrounding his works.

From the beginning of his literary career, James Joyce was the most distinctive figure in the renaissance that occurred in Irish cultural life after the death of Charles Stewart Parnell. From the first, he set himself to liberate Ireland, not by returning to Celtic myths or the Gaelic language and folklore, but by Europeanizing its cultural institutions. His early stories are an exorcism of the spirit of paralysis he felt about himself in the Dublin of his youth. As he gained detachment from these obstacles and knowledge of his own capacities as a writer of prose fiction, he produced two of the undisputed masterworks of modern literature, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man and Ulysses, as well as a final work that is perhaps beyond criticism, Finnegans Wake.

Edited by Albert Wachtel, Professor of Creative Studies and English at Pitzer College and Claremont Graduate University, this volume in the Critical Insights series presents a variety of new essays on the celebrated Irish writer. For readers who are studying the works of Joyce for the first time, a biographical sketch relates the details of his life and several essays survey the author’s critical reception, explore its cultural and historical contexts, situate Joyce among his contemporaries, and review key themes in his work. Readers seeking a deeper understanding of the writer can then move on to other original essays that explore a bevy of topics, such as the contextualization of Joyce’s theories of literature against contemporary writers and movements, Joyce’s deployment of the animal in his works, and the author’s relationship with Catholicism. Among the contributors are Maureen O’Connor, Tara Prescott, Hans Peter Wagner, and Edmund L. Epstein.

Rounding out the volume are a chronology of Joyce’s life and a list of his principal publications as well as a bibliography for readers seeking to study this fascinating author in greater depth.

Each essay is 2,500 to 5,000 words in length, and all essays conclude with a list of "Works Cited," along with endnotes. Finally, the volume's appendixes offer a section of useful reference resources:

A chronology of the author's life
A complete list of the author's works and their original dates of publication
A general bibliography
A detailed paragraph on the volume's editor
Notes on the individual chapter authors
A subject index