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Joyce and the Jews: Culture and Texts by Ira B. Nadel (auth.)

By Ira B. Nadel (auth.)

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Extra info for Joyce and the Jews: Culture and Texts

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But why the nineteenth century for this development? In short because secular learning then became available and desirable even by ghettoised Jews. Time, in the form of growth, change, and development overtook the conception of history where the existence of Judaism became a function of becoming and not being. 21 Accompanied by free inquiry into all sources, Gentile as well as Jewish, the Jewish historical consciousness became integrated, cyclical and dynamic, features exceedingly important to Joyce.

Feeling ostracised from Dublin, Joyce needed an exodus as self-justification, as the Jews needed it to gain their identity through the hope of return. As Richard Ellmann has recorded, Joyce returned to Ireland five times after his departure in 1902, but continued to develop an antipathy to improved relations with his country. In later life, he even resented Irish independence because it might alter his cultivated relationship between himself and his country. The redemptive need to return was satisfied through his writing about Ireland and by social union with those who also understood the value of exodus, the Jews.

8 Joyce, in revoking historical authority, also rejects its categories and divisions. 1428). Declaring his nation Ireland, Bloom, in a possible parody of Stephen's identification list in Portrait (15-16), goes on, in response to the celebration of the 'ancient Irish facecloth' with its 'rich incrustations Joyce, Jews and History 41 of time', to transcend time and place and the past by declaring 'And I belong to a race too ... that is hated and persecuted. Also now. This very moment. 1438-9; 1463-4; 1467--8).

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