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James Joyce's first and most widely read novel, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man is the story of Stephen Dedalus, a young man struggling to decide between a religious vocation and an artistic one. The aftermath of the struggle that is so poignantly and unflinchingly recorded forms a large part of the story of Joyce's masterwork, Ulysses, in which Stephen reappears as a main character.
About the Author
James Joyce was born in Dublin on February 2, 1882, the oldest of ten children. Though the family was poor, he was educated at the best Jesuit schools and then at University College, Dublin. Following his graduation in 1902, Joyce went to Paris, where he devoted himself to writing poems and prose sketches until he was recalled to Dublin in April 1903 due to the fatal illness of his mother. There he met a young woman from Galway, Nora Barnacle, and persuaded her to go with him to the Continent, where he planned to teach English, and in 1905 they moved to Trieste. They had two children, a son and a daughter. His first book, the poems of Chamber Music, was published in London in 1907. When Italy entered the First World War, Joyce moved to Zurich, where he remained until 1919. During this period he published A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (1916) and Exiles, a play (1918). Soon after the armistice, Joyce moved to Paris to arrange for the publication of Ulysses, a book which he had been working on since 1914. It was published on his birthday, in 1922, and brought him international fame. The same year he began work on Finnegans Wake, and though much harassed by eye troubles, and deeply affected by his daughter's mental illness, he completed and published that book in 1939. After the outbreak of the Second World War, he went to live in Unoccupied France, then managed to secure permission in December 1940 to return to Zurich. Joyce died there six weeks later, on January 13, 1941, and was buried in the Fluntern Cemetery. Jessica Hische is a letterer, illustrator, typographer, and web designer. She currently serves on the Type Directors Club board of directors, has been named a Forbes Magazine "30 under 30" in art and design as well as an ADC Young Gun and one of Print Magazine's "New Visual Artists." She has designed for Wes Anderson, McSweeney's, Tiffany & Co, Penguin Books and many others. She resides primarily in San Francisco, occasionally in Brooklyn.