This edited volume presents a series of essays on Dubliners written by leading Joyce scholars. The essays featured in the volume attend to the complexities of Joyce’s use of language and to the political and historical resonances of his short story collection.
Ellman’s acclaimed biography is widely considered by scholars to be the most authoritative account of Joyce’s life. The biography was originally published in 1952, and a revised and expanded version appeared thirty years later, in 1982.
Garrett’s edited volume from 1968 presents a small selection of critical essays on Dubliners that focus primarily on formal aspects of individual stories.
Gifford’s annotated guide to Joyce’s early works assists readers in understanding the significance of the many veiled allusions and references Joyce makes to particular people and places in turn-of-the-century Dublin. The guide also includes a substantial introductory essay that provides biographical, historical, and geographical context.
In this essay, Herring discusses Joyce’s “gnomonic” language in Dubliners. “Gnomonic” comes from the word gnomon, which appears on the first page of “The Sisters,” and Herring uses the term to refer to a type of language that is full of absences, omissions, and therefore uncertainty.
Norris’s monograph explores the various ways in which the stories of Dubliners are characterized by narrative unreliability. By examining what is left out of the stories in the form of strange gaps and omitted scenes (see the discussion of ellipsis in the Style essay), she produces “suspicious readings” of each of the fifteen stories in the collection.
Torchiana, Donald T. Backgrounds for Joyce’s Dubliners. Boston: Allen & Unwin, 1986.
Torchiana’s study includes individual chapters that provide insight into the social and historical background of each story in Dubliners. The chapters also include analyses of the national, religious, and mythic symbolism threaded throughout the collection.