Anne Fogarty

in Bloomsday 100

Published by University Press of Florida

Published in print October 2009 | ISBN: 9780813034027
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780813038162 | DOI:

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Bloomsday, celebrated every 16th of June, has long established itself as the hallowed festival of lovers of James Joyce. It is enjoyed as much because of its populist raffishness and carnivalesque dimensions as for its lofty literary pretensions. Bloomsday had become a hallmark of the value of Ulysses, while simultaneously functioning as a public relations exercise that served to augment the novel's reputation. Through such admixtures of volition, marketing strategy, and happenstance, Bloomsday now functions as a memorial to Joyce's radical literary experiment. Even though June 16, 1904 is irrevocably fixed as the temporal setting for Ulysses, the concept of Bloomsday has proven to be remarkably pliant, portable, and adaptable. It has now become a global occasion as readings, performances, parties, and theatrical enactments are held in numerous urban centers around the world. The marketability of Bloomsday as well as of aspects of Irishness means that Dublin is less a point of convergence for June 16 than a reconfigurable domain that can locate itself anywhere through the potent endorsement of Joyce's language, persona, and prestige.

Keywords: Bloomsday; James Joyce; Ulysses; festival; public relations; marketing; Irishness; Dublin

Chapter.  4636 words. 

Subjects: Literary Studies (20th Century onwards)

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