Introduction by John Banville
James Joyce was the singular figure of modernism, and to this day his grand vision looms large over contemporary literature and the entire Western canon. His stylistic innovations were revolutionary, yet nowhere is Joyce more accessible than in this volume of short stories, a brilliant collection that celebrates, critiques, and immortalizes the place that Joyce knew better than anyone else: Dublin. From the young boy encountering death in the opening story, “The Sisters,” to the middle-aged protagonist of its haunting finale, “The Dead,” considered one of the greatest short stories of all time, Dubliners is a vivid portrait of the city in all its glory and hardship, and a seminal work that redefined the short form. Featuring a new Introduction by acclaimed novelist John Banville, this edition is not only a breathless portal into Joyce’s “dear dirty Dublin” but a vital literary treasure from one of the great masters of all time.
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|Title of eBook: Dubliners|
|Release Date: 10-31-2000|
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|Publisher: Random House Publishing Group|
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There was no hope for him this time: it was the third stroke. Night after night I had passed the house (it was vacation time) and studied the lighted square of window: and night after night I had found it lighted in the same way, faintly and evenly. If he was dead, I thought, I would see the reflection of candles on the darkened blind for I knew that two candles must be set at the head of a corpse. He had often said to me: I am not long for this world, and I had thought his words idle. Now I knew they were true. Every night as I gazed up at the window I said softly to myself the word paralysis. It had always sounded strangely in my ears, like the word gnomon in the Euclid and the word simony in the Catechism. But now it sounded to me like the name of some maleficent and sinful being. It filled me with fear, and yet I longed to be nearer to it and to look upon its deadly work.
Old Cotter was sitting at the fire, smoking, when I came downstairs to supper. While my aunt was ladling out my stirabout he said, as if returning to some former remark of his:
-- No, I wouldn't say he was exactly...but there was something queer...there was something uncanny about him. I'll tell you my opinion...
He began to puff at his pipe, no doubt arranging his opinion in his mind. Tiresome old fool! When we knew him first he used to be rather interesting, talking of faints and worms; but I soon grew tired of him and his endless stories about the distillery.
-- I have my own theory about it, he said. I think it was one of those...peculiar cases...But it's hard to say....
He began to puff again at his pipe without giving us his theory. My uncle saw me staring and said to me:
-- Well, so your old friend is gon...